Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master Of Arts In Urban Special Education

Colleges & School

College Of Education And Leadership

First Advisor

Linda Gordy, PhD

Library of Congress Subject Heading

Education--Study and teaching; Critical thinking in children


In today’s modern educational community, teachers, paraprofessionals, and administrators alike have consistently been exposed to Bloom’s Taxonomy (1956) of Higher Order Thinking. These six levels of intellectual thinking are used as a model for effective teacher practice, learning objectives and outcomes, as well as a standard for students to practice and achieve higher-level critical thinking skills. The six original levels are as follows: Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Evaluating, and Creating. These domains are ordered from the least intuitive to the most advanced level of thinking skills, working from the ground up. When professionals in the field refer to High Level Bloom’s, they are typically referring to the top three domains: Analyze, Evaluate, and Create. It is common practice when educators are instructed to create their daily learning objectives using High Level Bloom’s, they typically utilize key words within the “Analyze” domain, such as compare/contrast, examine, or classify, and then make the claim that they have utilized “High Level Blooms.” This study focused on the top two domains, Evaluate and Create, and explored how these two areas of higher order thinking skills influenced a student’s reading comprehension. The purpose of this action research project was to investigate the effect of Socratic Seminars and their use of higher order thinking skills, specifically Bloom’s Domain Levels of Evaluating and Creating, on a student’s overall reading comprehension. The Socratic Seminar was the vehicle to which these higher order-thinking skills were implemented and utilized by two students within in a four-week literacy program. Data were collected to explore the effects of the Socratic Seminar on a student’s overall reading comprehension within two isolated case studies. Chapter 2 will provide a more detailed discussion concerning the clarification of the Socratic Seminar strategy in connection with relevant and important research that supports this study.


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