A Modified Version of Bloom’s Taxonomy and Critical Language Awareness: Evaluating EAL Textbooks for Junior High Schools in Ghana Through a Critical Literacy Approach

Brian Senyo Akrong, Chaka Chaka, Christa van der Walt


This study set out to evaluate three English as an additional language (EAL) textbooks used by junior high schools in the Ho West District of Ghana. It adopted a critical literacy framing and employed purposive sampling to select five junior high schools in the Ho West District. It utilised a modified version of Bloom’s (1956) taxonomy of cognitive dimensions and Cummins’ (1999) CALP, respectively, to evaluate the language contents of the three EFA textbooks: Book 1, Book 2, and Book 3. The three evaluated areas were: thinking skills; integration of various school subjects; and critical language awareness. Two of the findings of this study are worth mentioning. First, of the six cognitive dimensions of a modified version of Bloom’s taxonomy that are graded in degrees of cognitive complexity (e.g., from lower-order thinking skills to higher-order thinking skills), knowledge, as the first lower-order cognitive skill, was the most foregrounded in all the three textbooks. It was followed by understanding as the second lower-order cognitive skill. Second, all the three textbooks incorporated elements of other school subjects in their language contents in line with CALP. By contrast, all the three textbooks did not foster or develop critical language awareness. Overall, the three textbooks foregrounded lower-order thinking skills over higher-order thinking skills such as analysis, inventive thinking (synthesis), and evaluation.


Modified Version of Bloom’s Taxonomy, English as an Additional Language, Textbooks, Junior High Schools, Critical Language Awareness, Critical Literacy

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