Knowledge Area BEPs: Learning Theory


“Learners are assumed to be active agents in their own learning: they select the information to which they will attend and construct their own meaning from this selected information. Learners are not passive recipients, nor are they simple recorders of information provided to them by parents, teachers, textbooks, or media. This move away from passive views of learning . . . emphasizes what learners know (knowledge) and how they think (cognitive process) about what they know as they actively engage in meaningful learning.” (Anderson and Krathwohl, 2001)

Knowledge is described as: factual knowledge, conceptual knowledge, procedural knowledge, and personal responsibility for learning. The process of learning goes beyond remembering, to promote “meaningful learning” that includes the ability to “make sense of” and to “be able to use” what the person learns. For meaningful learning to take place the student must be able to (Anderson and Krathwohl, 2001):

  • Remember
  • Understand
  • Apply
  • Analyze
  • Evaluate
  • Create


1. We all learn differently. Understand and respond to your student’s:

  • Approach to new learning (Learning Style)
  • Capacity to learn (Intellectual Capability)
  • Strategy for understanding new information (Constructivism)
  • Capabilities based on age and stage of development (Development Theory)

2. Understand and apply basic principles of how the brain learns.


Anderson, L. W. and D. R. Krathwohl, eds. 2001. A Taxonomy for Learning, Teaching, and Assessing – A Revision of Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives . Addison Wesley Longman, Inc.: New York.

This section includes selected and edited pages from Soil and Water Conservation District Outreach: A Handbook for Program Development, Implementation and Evaluation (Section III; “How People Learn and Its Implications for Outreach”). Diane Cantrell. 2003. Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Soil and Water Conservation.