The first time I took an online graduate course, I was required to respond in a blog to journal readings and responses of other students. Some student comments were truly insightful, and I learned from them. But others were trite. Lately these student responses have me considering how to write appropriate entries.
- Remembering (repeating word-for-word or by using synonyms),
- Understanding (defining or explaining the meaning),
- Applying (showing how a concept has been used elsewhere or can be used in different circumstances),
- Analyzing (breaking a concept into its components)
- Evaluating (determining values of competing concepts or components), and
- Synthesizing (creating new concepts by fusing existing concepts or using an existing concept as a starting point).
Let’s take a well-known piece of writing, Robert Frost’s poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening,” and apply Bloom’s taxonomy to responses we might write about it.
- Unacceptable (personal comments, off-topic comments, liking or not liking with no explanation)
- Remembering (repeating a line or two, naming an idea previously stated by the teacher, but adding no new information)
- Understanding (summarizing the poem, paraphrasing it, but adding no new information)
- Applying (discussing rhythm, rhyme, figures of speech and other poetic elements that Frost used in the poem)
- Analyzing (discussing patterns of rhyme or diction, discussing published critiques of the poem)
- Evaluating (discussing where this poem ranks among Frost’s poems, how it rates compared to the work of other poets, discussing criterion used to rank the poem), and
- Synthesizing (writing a poem or other artistic expression using the style or content of the poem, such as the illustration for this blog; writing a sequel to the poem; writing a poem in a completely different style to express the ideas of the poem).