Even in knowing the basic steps in developing critical thinking, the challenge often lies in applying them to specific content and disciplines. Benjamin Bloom’s taxonomy of cognitive learning is often referenced across all disciplines in categorizing the types of questions that can lead to higher-order thinking. The categories, moving from lowest to highest cognitive task, include knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. Bloom’s taxonomy has been expanded by Anderson & Krathwohl (2001) to help educators better implement the categories in their intended curriculum. The categories are to remember, understand, apply, analyze, evaluate, and create .
Based on the various models of student learning and development, it is important to be aware of how students best learn and how to facilitate the type of deep engagement and thinking that will make them successful. The following conditions have been designated as instructional techniques that will facilitate intellectual growth (Felder & Brent, 2004):