It’s a tough job giving and receiving feedback. I’ve written about feedback before [Feedback Please] but I’m looking at it somewhat differently now. I understand the power and potential of feedback to achieve learning goals. In my mind, I know that feedback is important. What I’m realizing now, more than ever, is the emotional reaction toward feedback when it comes attached with a grade or an evaluation. I’ve been on the giving and receiving sides of the feedback cycle in the past week. I’ve experienced the highs and lows of emotions that come with giving and receiving feedback. Relationships are important in the feedback loop. Since the feedback is sometimes not quite what you, or your students, have expected, then emotional reactions can cloud the feedback message. Relationships help when feedback follows an SE2R format (Barnes, 2015).As I reflect on feedback, I’m revising my thinking on the content and strategies I’m using to provide feedback. The content of the feedback should include a focus, comparison, and function. When sharing this feedback content, I need to consider the valence, clarity, tone, and specificity of the message I’m sharing with students. I’ll need to consider strategies in delivering the feedback such as mode, timing, amount, and audience. How I deliver feedback for online learning contexts will differ from the face-to-face classroom environments. But no matter how, where, when and for whom I’m providing the feedback, I need to keep the face of the individual learner in mind. If I’m writing a feedback comment, or scripting a video feedback message, I’ll keep the student’s face in mind. But I’ll focus the feedback message on the assignment, task, or ‘third thing’, not on the person, or the personal qualities or personality characteristics of their work.
I’m applying the 3E2R model of feedback (Barnes, 2015) to ensure that students have opportunities to learn and set goals for success from the feedback. The element I’m learning, in this ‘marks-are-all-that-matters’ world, is not to attach a grade, evaluation, or rubric to the feedback. If I do, it puts a barrier between the feedback and successful learning. I’m facing this with my work as an academic where articles I’ve written are rejected with little feedback for improvement. I’m facing this with my students who see the grade and fail to fully read or understand the feedback. Taking time to explain, redirect, and allow for a resubmission, would be helpful for my students. It would be beneficial for my own academic progress. Perhaps I need to share this feedback framework with my students and the reviewers of academic articles. There may be some relationship building that can result from being open about this feedback loop.
Add a comment to give me some feedback.
Share a comment with my fellow Team Lakehead bloggers
Barnes, Mark. (2015). Assessment 3.0. Thousand Oaks, California: Corwin Press
Feedback image is CC-BY-SA-NC, Helen DeWaard.