Positive, Productive Feedback

Language matters.

Most students are resistant to peer critiques.

When they hear the word “criticism” - walls go up. Many students rightly question the paradoxical idea of “constructive criticism” because it seems a bit like an oxymoron - build something up, just to tear it down.

For that reason, when helping to facilitate peer reviews, I consistently use the term “feedback” to describe the objective of the exercise. I like to point out that - while in school - if our goal is to learn more or produce better work, than any feedback that pushes us in that direction has a positive, productive impact.

Even when errors or missteps are revealed through peer review, if the goal is just to get better, then even that can be perceived as a positive outcome.

RISE Model Emily Wray Positive Feedback