Constructive Criticism - East Carolina University

Constructive Criticism - East Carolina University

Constructive Criticism Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things. - Winston Churchill What is Constructive Criticism? Feedback about someone elses work Valid and well-reasoned opinions Includes both positive and negative comments

Friendly manner rather than an oppositional one Valuable tool in raising and maintaining performance standards Constructive vs. Destructive Criticism Constructive Criticism Destructive Criticism Intends to educate

Related to the work Helps build on an idea Makes the outcome better Is intelligent and calculated Intends to embarrass Feels like a personal attack Tears down an idea Makes the person feel worse Includes rapid-fire and random responses

Tries to take over Comes along to help Constructive Criticism in College Communication styles differ in college High school teachers Goal is to increase self-esteem and correct errors May be less direct when giving feedback or assessing work College professors

Goal is to correct errors and increase proficiency More direct or straightforward in feedback May not mention what was done well Understanding the Intent of Criticism Constructive criticism may be interpreted as a personal attack if you dont understand its purpose However, professors are not launching a personal attack by giving you direct feedback No vendetta against students Their job is to make you a stronger critical thinker, a better

writer, and a more knowledgeable person They have the benefit of experience and perspective to offer you quality feedback and advice You will not improve without hearing where you went wrong and how to correct it Prepare Yourself for this Change Start preparing now for the shift in feedback styles you will encounter in college in order to Alleviate culture shock Receive feedback in the spirit in which its intended

Learn from criticism more quickly Use the following tips to help you process constructive criticism and become more thickskinned Tips for Processing Constructive Criticism 1. 2. 3. 4.

Stop Separate the content from the delivery Reflect and use it as a learning experience Acknowledge your feelings, but dont take it personally 5. Learn something and move on Stop Do not react or respond immediately Take a deep breath or count to 10, if necessary

Separate the Content of the Message from the Manner in which It Is Delivered Feedback in college will usually be professional and appropriate Some criticism may be delivered with emotion such as frustration, anger, or sarcasm Keep your cool and stay rational Dont match the other persons emotions Reacting negatively or emotionally generally makes the situation worse

Address the underlying issue, not the way its being raised Reflect Upon and Learn From the Feedback What is the content of the message that was conveyed? Move past defensiveness to genuinely analyze the feedback Was the criticism justified? To what extent? If so, how can you improve? If not, what else can you learn from the situation?

Acknowledge Your Feelings, But Dont Take It Personally Some criticism may have a big impact on you It may sometimes be personal, and it often feels personal Its ok to feel hurt, angry, sad, disappointed, stung, surprised, or whatever else However, dont let it Bring you to a standstill Define you

Lower your self-esteem Remember: Nobodys perfect! Learn Something and Move On Take the lesson away from the experience, but leave the negative feelings in the past Use it as a challenge to get better Use what youve learned so you dont repeat the same mistakes

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attributi onNonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.

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