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Ensuring That Tasks Require Higher-Order Thinking

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A Taxonomy for Learning, Teaching, and Assessing
Adapted from Anderson, L.W., & Krathwohl, D.R. (2001). A Taxonomy for Learning, Teaching, and Assessing. A Revision of Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives (Abridged Version).

In her essay, "Is That Higher-Order Task Really Higher Order?" Jennifer Gonzalez, reflects on how to ensure that performance tasks really require higher-order thinking.

Gonzalez refers to the Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy, first published by Anderson and Krathwohl in 2001, in her discussion of two common mistakes teachers make with higher-order thinking tasks.

Mistake 1: Thinking a task is at the "analyze" level when it's really at the "understand" level

Mistake 2: Thinking a task is at the "create" level when it's actually a "remember" or "understand" task with a pretty package

Strategies described and illustrated include:

  • Useful distinctions of the thinking involved in various creative classroom tasks In the latter half of her essay
  • An analysis of an exemplary Bill of Rights lesson
  • How creative tasks can engage students in higher-order thinking