Trainees' perceptions of feedback: validity evidence for two FEEDME (feedback in medical education) instruments.

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Medical Education

Journal Title

Teaching and learning in medicine


Construct: Medical educators consider feedback a core component of the educational process. Effective feedback allows learners to acquire new skills, knowledge, and attitudes. Learners' perceptions of feedback are an important aspect to assess with valid methods in order to improve the feedback skills of educators and the feedback culture.

BACKGROUND: Although guidelines for delivering effective feedback have existed for several decades, medical students and residents often indicate that they receive little feedback. A recent scoping review on feedback in medical education did not reveal any validity evidence on instruments to assess learner's perceptions of feedback. The purpose of our study was to gather validity evidence on two novel FEEDME (Feedback in Medical Education) instruments to assess medical students' and residents' perceptions of the feedback that they receive.

APPROACH: After the authors developed an initial instrument with 54 items, cognitive interviews with medical students and residents suggested that 2 separate instruments were needed, one focused on the feedback culture (FEEDME-Culture) and the other on the provider of feedback (FEEDME-Provider). A Delphi study with 17 medical education experts and faculty members assessed content validity. The response process was explored involving 31 medical students and residents at 2 academic institutions. Exploratory factor analysis and reliability analyses were performed on completed instruments.

RESULTS: Two Delphi consultation rounds refined the wording of items and eliminated several items. Learners found both instruments easy and quick to answer; it took them less than 5 minutes to complete. Learners preferred an electronic format of the instruments over paper. Factor analysis revealed a two- and three-factor solution for the FEEDME-Culture and FEEDME-Provider instruments, respectively. Cronbach's alpha was greater than 0.80 for all factors. Items on both instruments were moderately to highly correlated (range, r = .3-.7).

CONCLUSIONS: Our results provide preliminary validity evidence of 2 novel feedback instruments. After further validation of both FEEDME instruments, sharing the results of the FEEDME-Culture instrument with educational leaders and faculty may improve the culture of feedback on specific educational rotations and at the institutional level. The FEEDME-Provider instrument could be useful for faculty development targeting feedback skills. Additional research studies could assess whether both instruments may be used to help learners receive feedback and prompt reflective learning.



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