Analysis of the West African Senior School Certificate Examination Chemistry Questions according to Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy
Keywords:Bloom’s revised taxonomy, cognitive process skills, knowledge dimension, chemistry questions, higher order cognitive skills
The current reform in science education across the world is a deliberate effort to develop students’ higher order cognitive skills (HOCS) through question asking, critical thinking, and problem solving. One of the ways to achieve this goal is to improve on the quality of questions asked in examinations. Therefore, this study analyzes chemistry questions asked in examinations conducted by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC). 328 Chemistry questions for a period of 5 years were analyzed using the framework of Bloom’s revised taxonomy that reflects dual perspective on learning and cognition. It was found that 80% of the questions merely measured students’ lower order cognitive skills (LOCS), while 49.4% and 19.5% of the questions measured conceptual and procedural knowledge respectively. The results further revealed that none of the questions require students to employ metacognitive knowledge. It is concluded that the questions place much emphasis on LOCS, than on HOCS.
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