Key Features of Constructive Feedback and How It Contributes to the Assessment Process

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Constructive feedback is a way to increase self-awareness, offers options and encourages the learners development, this is a very important part of the teachers role and must be given with tact and encouragement to progress the learner. Constructive feedback does not mean giving positive feedback only. Negative feedback, if given skilfully, can be very important and useful. Destructive feedback is negative feedback which is given in an unskilled way. It can leave the participant feeling bad with seemingly no way forward. Verbalising and exploring a learners thoughts can assist them gain a positive perspective of their own work and ability and will also help identify problem areas, therefore providing both the teacher and the learner with the ability to develop e.g. asking a learner where they think they did well and where they think they could improve. Some situations in which constructive feedback is required can include; ongoing performance discussions, providing specific performance pointers, following up on teaching discussions, providing correct guidance, providing a learner with consequences of their behaviour. Clues at when constructive feedback is needed can be when a learner asks for your opinion on how they are doing, this can be a 'cry for help' from a learner. When there are persistent unresolved issues with a learners progress and work, this can be an indication that they require constructive feedback. Taking a leaners feelings into account can be necessary as providing feedback which the learner feels is criticism. This can prevent that person from learning effectively from there on in and may not feel comfortable approaching you when they have future issues or problems. It is the ability of the teacher to distinguish between the different skills of the learner e.g. the learner may have some good ideas but may lack in their written work.
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