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Benjamin Bloom


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Title: Benjamin Bloom

Benjamin Bloom
February 21, 1913 September 13, 1999
He was born February 21, 1913
in Lansford, Pennsylvania.
He earned his bachelors and masters degrees
from Pennsylvania State University in 1935.
He earned his Ph.D. in Education at the
University of Chicago in 1942.
In the 1940s Bloom began to question the purpose
education while he was a university examiner.
Details He became a staff member of the
University of Chicago in 1940. He had this
position until 1943. He then became a university
examiner on the University of Chicagos Board of
Examinations. He began this job in 1943 and
continued until 1959. It was his job to give
comprehensive exams to undergraduate students.
This was meant to see if students had mastered
the information that they had studied. When he
first began this job they gave the students exams
that were based on factual recall. This made
Bloom think about the purpose of education.
Ralph W. Tyler was Blooms mentor.
Details Ralph Tyler was a colleague as well as a
mentor for Bloom. He worked with Tyler in the
examiners office. Under Tylers influence,
Bloom realized that students should not be
compared and they should be helped to achieve the
goals of the curriculum being studied. Together
they organized educational objectives according
to their level of difficulty.
This led to the creation of Blooms Taxonomy and
his book.
Details In 1956, Bloom worked with a group of
psychologists with the American Psychological
Association to develop a hierarchy of
intellectual behavior. This was set up based on
learning and mastering a concept. This was later
turned into a book called Taxonomy of educational
objectives Handbook 1, the cognitive domain
(Bloom, 1956). The ideas in this book were used
to assist in the preparation of evaluation
materials. This helped to formulate evaluation
tasks and formulate objectives. Its main purpose
was to determine a level of understanding that a
student has regarding a particular topic.
Blooms Taxonomy is based on six categories.
Details This is most commonly known as Blooms
Taxonomy. It was devised into six major steps
content knowledge, comprehension, application,
analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. The six
steps or levels are thought to be built on one
another and increase in complexity. They begin
with basic factual recall and build up to higher
order thinking. This helped them to later change
the exams to try to see how the students could
reason and solve problems.
Many things have been created by people all over
the world based on Blooms taxonomy.
Play the video of Blooms Taxonomy to learn more
about each level. Scroll down the page to find
this graphic. Then click on it to play this
short video.
Bloom knew that each task stimulated one of three
Details Any task stimulates one of three
psychological domains. The domains are
cognitive, affective, and psychomotor. They
overlap. The cognitive domain is based on
knowledge and understanding of concepts or ideas.
The affective domain is based on attitudes and
feelings that occur because of the learning
process. It is also based on preferences and
values that a student has. Psychomotor is based
on manipulative or physical skills. Blooms
Taxonomy deals with the cognitive domain.
Bloom co-authored a book on the affective domain.

Details Blooms next publication was a book that
he co-authored. It was based on the affective
domain. It was called Taxonomy of Education
Objectives, Volume II The Affective Domain. It
was published in 1964. It was for educators to
understand the importance of attitudes in the
development of learning.
Bloom as a Researcher
Details Elliot W. Eisner, a former student,
believed that Bloom was in love with the process
of finding out. He also said that Bloom was an
optimist, but looked at facts to design his
studies. He had the ability to formulate
research problems.   People who believed in
educational objectives liked Blooms findings.
He felt that it would give students success in
school. He felt that problems were curriculum
designs and forms of teaching.
Bloom wanted to get rid of the bell-shaped
Details Bloom wanted to rid the bell-shaped
distribution. He thought that the distribution
was caused because of social privilege and social
class. Schools were trying to get students to
learn everything too fast. He referred to this
as the horse-race modeling of school. It was
the idea that all students were expected to
understand and learn something all at once. He
felt that mastery learning should be used
Stability and Change in Human Characteristics
Details Another topic Bloom studied was stability
and change in human characteristics. Blooms was
able to predict a childs score in the future
from a score they received at the age of seven.
He also found that he could predict a childs
intelligence at the age of seventeen based on
estimates made from the age of four. The
physical and mental characteristics of adults
could be predicted from testing done when they
were children. He had an accuracy of 0.8. This
led to his book, Stability and Change in Human
Bloom Researched Giftedness
Details Bloom also researched giftedness. He
felt that the abilities were related to
interactions that individuals had with their
environment. Therefore, he believed that the
development of appropriate environments were
important to the realization of potential. Bloom
felt that education was a process. It takes
effort to realize human potential plus it takes
an effort to make the potential possible. Bloom
felt that learning was influenced by opportunity
and effort.
Developing Talent in Young People
Details Bloom found that world-famous
high-achieving adults were not regarded as child
prodigies. He discovered that it was the kind of
attention and support that they got at home from
their parents. Therefore, he learned that
environment matters.   Bloom led a research team
that researched about the power of the
environment and how it influences human
performance. This led to his book, Developing
talent in young people.
Bloom Taught His Students that Environment
Details One of Blooms students studied this
further during his research for his dissertation.
He was interested in the students experience.
He wanted to know their thinking when learning.
Many of his students studied impact of
educational environment in the home and at
school. They waned to know what the environment
was not only for the student, but also for all
the children in that home. R.H. Dave, a former
student of Bloom, found that parents provided
different opportunities and support because of
different expectations for each child. It
impacted what they were able to learn in school
and outside of school. They found that people
who reached top levels were those who work hard,
have challenging, but affectionate parents and
have the top teachers. He learned from this that
early experiences in the childs home have a
great impact on later learning.
Effective Teaching is Needed
Details Effective teaching would be needed beyond
experiences that students had early in their
lives. Curriculum would need to be organized
sequentially and students would need to be
supported with appropriate instruction. An
educators job would also be to arrange the
environmental conditions. They would need to see
what aptitudes students had. Time also would
need to be addressed. Since not all students
will learn at the same pace, he knew that there
should not be a time frame for a student to learn
something. The results otherwise would be
students being left behind not understanding
something. If students were given the
variability of time then all students could be
successful. Bloom understood the student
complexity of performance. He knew that test
scores could not be interpreted without
considering the environment that they came from.
Problem-solving Processes of College Students
Details Bloom was also interested in the thinking
and development of students thinking. He worked
with Broder to learn what students were thinking
about when teachers were teaching. They studied
college students. They used stimulated recall
and think aloud techniques. The book that
developed from these ideas was called
Problem-solving processes of college students.
It was written in 1958.
His Research Impacted his Students
Details Based on his research and his beliefs
about education, he used his research as a way to
make changes in the educational system. He had a
great impact on many of his students. One student
in particular, Elliot Eisner, remembered
distinctly was his office looked like. He said
that he had books, papers, journal articles,
along with this and that. He said that he didnt
exactly know why he had all the random stuff, but
he always remembered his passion for learning how
things work. He said that he had a large
chalkboard in his office that had relationships
he expected to find or already found in research.
Bloom made an impact on students and
Details He was a professor that did not always
teach in the same fashion as other teachers.
Eisner recalled that he once had the students
toss coins and record the number of heads and
tails produced in a number of trials. This was
done in a course called Education as a Field of
Study. The purpose of this activity was to teach
the students how to use statistics and
probability in a way that could be understood.
This was taught in a graduate level course. It
is obvious that Bloom had an impact on teaching
in his own class as well as in other teachers
classes. I remember a time that my professor,
Alfinio Flores, also had us do a similar activity
in his math education course.   Scholars honored
Bloom. He was given degrees and medals. In 1970
he was appointed the Charles H. Swift
Distinguished Service Professor.
Head Start Program
Details Blooms involvement as a university
examiner, his research, and his teaching gave
many contributions to society. However, his
research on environmental influences helped
society in other ways besides teaching. His
book, Stability and Change in Human
Characteristics, helped to establish a Head Start
Program in the United States. He was also asked
to testify to the Congress of the United States.
It was regarding the importance of the first four
years of a childs life as critical time to
promote cognitive development.
Important Roles
Details Bloom had many important roles, which
also included being the chairman of research and
development committees, being a member of the
College Entrance Examinations Board, and being
elected the President of the American Educational
Research Association in 1965.
Helping Other Countries
Details His activism led to creating the
International Association for the Evaluation of
Educational Achievement (IEA). This was to
improve students learning. Dozens of countries
were included in this. He was also an
educational advisor for several different
governments including Israel and India, along
with many other countries.   He also organized
the International Seminar for Advanced Training
in Curriculum Development. This was held in
Granna, Sweden during the summer of 1971. Over
thirty countries participated. The countries had
formerly used rote learning as a way of teaching.
The countries previously gave little assistance
to their teachers for teaching. The seminar was
a six-week session. Its purpose was to help them
with their curriculum. Teachers were able to come
up with materials and pedagogical approaches that
would help improve their teaching.
Create Helpful Evaluation Practices
Details He developed the Measurement, Evaluation
and Statistical Analysis (MESA) program. On this
program he had members who had quantitative and
analytical skills. Their goal was to design
helpful evaluation practices and informative
Summarizing His Work into a Book
Details Bloom summarized his work in a book that
he wrote in 1980 titled, All Our Children
Learning. It stated his lifes research that all
children can learn at a high level when practices
are taken in both the home and the school.
He died in Chicago, Illinois
on September 13, 1999
at the age of 86.
Teachers and future teachers learn about Bloom
and his theories today.
Details Today Blooms Taxonomy is commonly known
in the field of education. Materials and
products are sold throughout the world based on
his research in the field. Pre-service teachers
learn about Bloom in their education courses.
Blooms Taxonomy and his research will continue
to improve education.
Details It is amazing to think of all the
contributions Benjamin Bloom made in the many
roles that he had. He has impacted the future of
education. His research will continue to help
educators teach more effectively and will allow
other researchers to build on the information
that he acquired.
References   Benjamin Bloom. (n.d.). Retrieved
August 29, 2006, from http//
/Benjamin_Bloom   Benjamin Bloom. (n.d.).
Retrieved August 29, 2006, from
f/bloome.pdf   Bloom, influential education
researcher. (n.d.). Retrieved August 30, 2006,
from http//
html   Learning domains or Blooms taxonomy.
(n.d.). Retrieved August 31, 2006,
from http//
l   Learning skills program Blooms taxonomy.
(n.d.). Retrieved August 29, 2006, from
om.html   Major categories in the taxonomy of
educational objectives (Bloom 1956). (n.d.).
Retrieved August 30, 2006, from
1.html   The taxonomy of learning and Benjamin
Bloom. (n.d.). Retrieved August 30, 2006, from