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Apprenticeship Learning Support

Bloom's (1956) taxonomy is a useful tool for categorizing a progression from the descriptive to higher levels of critical/analytical thought. Descriptive thinking is represented in the first two levels in the diagram: knowledge, comprehension. Critical thinking is represented as moving through the top four levels in Bloom's taxonomy: application, analysis, synthesis, evaluation (see figure below). Application looks at the way in which ideas can be applied in practice. Analysis looks at how ideas work as a system of thought. Synthesis is concerned with the way in which ideas can complement each other and work together in combination, sometimes to create a new system of thought. Evaluation looks to judge the worth of ideas, their strengths and weaknesses in particular contexts, and how they compare in effectiveness with other ideas.