If you are like me, then you did not enjoy those long lectures in college about Bloom’s Taxonomy. It always drove me crazy and all I wanted to do was move on past the theory classes on education and into the practical application.
Journalism and Media classes often are derided as “just fun classes” where the kids “do nothing but play around with computers and electronic toys.” But if you get out your taxonomy, then you can show that we do more higher order thinking skills before the end of 1st period, than some classes do all day. (With apologies to the Army)
Remembering: Our students must remember various commands in multiple software packages, names of coaches and their sport, various times, days and places for photo shoots, and how to operate multiple pieces of equipment.
Understanding: It is one thing to remember where a button is, but they also have to know what it does. The have to understand various processes such as interviewing, shooting video, taking still photos and writing copy.
Applying: This is where they take what they learn and put it into practice, actually taking photos, shooting video, editing video, designing pages, etc.
Analyzing: This is where it gets more difficult and usually this is where it is helpful for a journalism/media student to take a second or even a third year in order to analyze. This means editing for mistakes, making suggestions for improvement, looking at photos/video to learn how to take better photos/video, editing page design or graphics for content and useablilty.
Evaluating: Probably one of the most difficult skill levels in media, looking at how successful or well constructed something was (analyzing) and then looking for ways for improvement and then implementing those ideas.
Creating: Almost everything we do leads to some kind of final product: newspaper, yearbook, TV show, news segment, short film, photograph, web site, graphic, etc. But of course the students also learn that the actual creation of the final work also means more work in sending it or formatting it properly for production.
Nearly everything we do leads to the very top of the Blooms Taxonomy pyramid – creation. We don’t even think about it much, because it is just part of our industry. How many others can say that of their assignments?