Provide Meaningful Feedback to Others

[Typing] Very good here. This area could use a little more work.
Hold on now. We’ve got a problem. Wait … not we, YOU have a problem.
What do you mean?
We need to work on your feedback.
What's wrong with what I'm saying?
Let me answer that question with a few easy principles to follow when providing feedback.

Principles for Providing Feedback

Describe Specifics

First, describe specifics. Video helps a lot, but even with a timestamped comment, it doesn’t help another educator to simply say "Good job!" or "You need to improve on this technique." Describing the specific behavior and clarifying your meaning will provide an educator with feedback to which they can truly respond.

Check the statements that describe specifics.

  1. The way you responded right then was excellent.
  2. The students still appear to be confused after you finished your explanation.
  3. Your technique for responding to the students could use some improvement.
  4. The way you facilitated this activity really helped the students learn.
  5. You could have asked the student to explain why she answered the way she did rather than moving on to the next student.


Stay on Purpose

Second, stay on purpose. If an educator has asked you for help, many times they have specific goals in mind. If they have communicated the purpose to you, make sure your feedback stays within that area of improvement.

Prompt Reflection

Third, prompt reflection. Telling another educator what to do is not always the best approach, even when you are being specific. Providing feedback that prompts them to reflect on an approach they could take can create an opportunity to turn the feedback into a true discussion.

Respond to each situation below with a comment that will help prompt reflection.

Situation 1: While students are working on their in-class assignments, the educator is out of view of the camera for about fifteen minutes.
Situation 2: The laptop and projector are not working to show a power point and the educator spends 10 minutes attempting to fix the issue.
Situation 3: Educator begins class by using a great hook, or starter to get the student’s attention.


Don't Forget the Positive

Fourth, don’t forget the positive. It’s easy to focus on areas that need improving, especially when improvement is the goal. But it is just as important to point out what an educator is doing well and should continue to do.