Reimagining Bloom’s Taxonomy – With an Eye on Technology

By: Jone Tiffany

According to the NMC Horizon report, 2016 Higher Education Edition, trends in the integration of educational technologies in higher education are quickly evolving (Johnson et al., 2016). Topics such as using blended learning, keeping education relevant, and balancing connected and unconnected lives are paramount. The nursing education culture is at times slow to adopt these emerging technologies. In 2010, Benner, Sutphen, Leonard, & Day called for a change to more contextual learning in nursing education. In the past six years there has been some movement to integrate technology in the nursing education community, but why it is so difficult to operationalize? Is it lack of effort, time, resources, or all of the above?

The SAMR (Substitution, Augmentation, Modification and Redefinition) model designed by Ruben Puentedura in 2012, helps educators reimagine how they might design, develop, and infuse technology into learning experiences. Dr. Puentedura’s model provides educators with a framework for successful technology integration. The end goal is to push for higher levels of thinking in students. In addition, it gives educators an opportunity to evaluate how a specific technology is working, helps design tasks that enable higher-order thinking skills, and engages students in rich learning experiences.

According to the SAMR model, there are four ways for faculty to change activities in order to up the ante with technology integration:
1. Substitution. Use the same assignment/task but substitute a new technology. The level  of technology integration is low.
2. Augmentation. Makes an assignment better with the addition of new technology features.
3. Modification. Use technology to implement significant task redesign, thus allowing the student to change the task and personalize the project.
4. Redefinition. Assign a task that cannot be done without technology, allowing for the creation of a new task.

Click here for a free download with examples of how to use SAMR in nursing education.

samr

This Image is the creation of Dr. Ruben Puentedura. You will find many of his presentation slides on his blog here.  This work is all under the Creative Commons-license, which allows for reproduction with attribution.

In his subsequent work, Dr. Puentedura took the model one step further and aligned the SAMR model with Blooms Taxonomy. In the SAMR model, the goal is to move the task from lower to upper levels of technology integration. Similarly, SAMR coupled with Blooms moves the student from lower-level remembering to higher-order thinking of evaluating and creating. It is important to remember that these are not mutually exclusive. One might design a redefinition task that assists the student with remembering a particular concept, or design a substitution activity where a student creates a deliverable. Overall, it is important to choose the appropriate learning activity/digital tool that will enhance student learning.

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