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What are some similarities and differences between Bloom's taxonomy and Maslow's hierarchy of needs? 

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Bloom's Taxonomy and Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs are similar in that they are both hierarchies. A person begins at the base and moves up the pyramid as each skill is practiced, achieved, or mastered. The big difference is in what each hierarchy aims to explain. Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs is very much focused on a person's overall health and wellness. It is often a topic of health courses in general because health courses teach about mental health, physical health, spiritual health, and emotional health. Maslow's Hierarchy focuses on those aspects of a person's health, and the hierarchy is meant to stress that a person must obtain the things on each tier before moving up the pyramid to eventually gain self-actualization. The bottom tier is a person's physical needs. Things like food, water, and shelter are on that level. Maslow would say that a person can't focus on self-esteem, love, sexual relationships, etc., if that person is struggling to eat enough calories on a day-to-day basis. Those higher tier concerns simply won't be focused on if a person is starving to death.

Bloom's Taxonomy does not focus on a person's overall happiness, health, wellness, or life fulfillment. Bloom's Taxonomy is much more focused on mental development and levels of learning and understanding. For that reason, Bloom's Taxonomy has guided educational systems and classrooms for decades. As a person moves up Bloom's pyramid, they are moving into higher levels of thinking, knowing, learning, and understanding. At the base of his pyramid is remembering knowledge. It is not a high order level of thinking because it could be nothing more than memorization. People can memorize large amounts of information without actually understanding any of it. As a person moves up the pyramid, higher levels of cognitive processing must happen. For example, analyzing something is a higher level skill/ability of thinking. Asking a student to compare and contrast two things is a big step up from memorizing details about two things.

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The main similarity between these two is that they are both hierarchically structured. Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs arranges human needs in a pyramid. At the bottom are things like food and sex, and the hierarchy of needs rises through needs related to human safety, social needs, and finally the need for "self-actualization," or fulfillment. One has to be able to satisfy the more basic needs before satisfying the higher needs. Bloom's taxonomy is also imagined as a pyramid, with "knowledge" like rote memory at the bottom, and evaluation at the top. (The "new," or "revised" taxonomy places "remembering at the bottom and "creating" at the top.) Both the original and revised Bloom's taxonomy rise from basic knowledge through more sophisticated levels of cognition. In a way analogous to Maslow's understanding of needs, Bloom thought lower-level thinking skills were the foundation for higher-order skills. So while both created a hierarchical model for human development, they were talking about two different things. Maslow's model was about the satisfaction of needs, Bloom's about thinking skills.

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