Marzano’s New Taxonomy

Good morning everybody!!!

We’ve been hearing a lot lately about the Marzano’s New Art and Science of Teaching. I think that this is partially because of the recently developed opinions surrounding Bloom’s taxonomy (BT) – there are those who would claim that due to it’s inability to consider the student as a whole human being, it falls down unforgivably.

When thought about, this opinion of BT makes perfect sense. As teachers we are encouraged to use the fanciest cognitive verbs we can conjure up…  but if our students are not fully prepared to learn then fancy verbs and expertly crafted lesson plans won’t make much of a difference.

Robert Marzano’s taxonomy is made up of three systems that are critical to thinking and learning. The three systems are;

  1. The Self-system
  2. The Meta-cognitive system
  3. The Cognitive system

The Self-system, as the name would suggest, is a student’s most interpersonal system and is responsible for the attitudes, beliefs and feelings that determine whether or not the motivation to learn exists. Sense of importance, self-efficacy and socio-emotional factors all play a role in the level of motivation a student feels.

The meta-cognitive system is responsible for determining what information is essential and what cognitive processes are best suited to working with that information. This is where goals are set, monitored and, if necessary, adjusted.

Finally, the cognitive system is where the the mental processes work to make use of new knowledge. This system allows students to access facts and processes from their memories and put them to work. Marzano breaks the Cognitive System down into four components: knowledge retrieval, comprehension, analysis, and knowledge utilisation.  These components are hierarchal and build upon one another, as illustrated below…

marzanoDownload PDF version HERE!

I have a printed (and laminated ❤ ) copy of the above taxonomy / cognitive verb breakdown on my desk so that when I’m drafting new lesson plans it’s within reach – so far I’ve found it to be extremely helpful as it saves me googling the taxonomy for every new learning intention.

How do you feel about the shift from Blooms to Marzano? I’d love to hear some more opinions!

Also – I got a lot of messages last week asking about the watercolour clip art I’ve adopted into my blogging routine ❤ They are all free downloads from Fox and Hazel ❤ They are free to use for personal use (i.e. blogs etc.) but if you’re selling them obviously you’ll need to buy a commercial licence ❤

That’s all from me for now… have a wonderful week lovelies x

Namaste ❤




Marzano, R. J. (2000). Designing a new taxonomy of educational objectives. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Schoenfeld, A. (1992). Learning to think mathematically: problem solving, metacognition, and sense making in mathematics. In D. A. Grows (Ed.). Handbook of research on mathematics teaching and learning, (pp. 334-370). New York: Macmillan.