Dr. Fawaz Aqel
Prof. Jawdat Ahmad Saadeh
Dr. Ahmad Fahim Jabr
Dr. Suzan Arafat
As Higher level cognitive tasks are reflected in the kinds of questions presented to students in their textbooks (Franklin, 1981), this study has been directed to evaluate the instructional. questions , in the Eighth Grade English Textbooks used in Palestine during the academic year 1999-2000 via Bloom's Taxonomy, to find out to whicl1 degree it developed higher thinking skills. it Bloom's Taxonomy divides the way people learn into three major domains. These are effective, psychomotor and the-cognitive domains.
The cognitive domain is further divided into categories or levels. These are arranged in a hierarchically ordered classification system, starting from knowledge and comprehension (as lower level categories) to application, analysis, synthesis and evaluation (as higher level categories)(Bloom, 1956).
This study is the first in the field of TEFL to be conducted at a Palestinian university (to the best of knowledge of the researcher).
In addition to this, its importance comes from being an assessment of the educational role of a textbook in improving the higher thinking skills of the students. Questions presented in the student textbook, workbook and the stories were analyzed and compared according to Bloom's Taxonomy method.
An analysis sheet was prepared for this purpose , Key words, cited in appendix 2, were used as criteria in the classification of the questions according to the requested taxonomy. Number of questions, per each cognitive level, was computed. Lower and higher level question groups were calculated. Frequencies and percentages were tabulated and represented by bar graphs to facilitate the analysis of the results.
The results of the study revealed that there was still a preponderance of lower level questions in the studied textbooks. The researcher recommended that more studies be conducted on English Petra textbooks for the other grades. She also recommended that the Palestinian curriculum designers improve their questioning techniques in the new Palestinian curricula.