October 2018

Using the Three Levels of Feedback When Precepting

As a preceptor, you can use one of three levels of feedback for a learner's behavior in a clinical encounter, depending on whether you are communicating your observation, your feelings, or your prediction based on experience. When choosing which level of feedback to use, it’s good to bear in mind your goal for what the learner needs to improve. 

For example, Level 1 Feedback is a description of the learner’s behavior, with neither interpretation nor judgment. When you give a learner Level 1 Feedback, you might begin with “I heard…” or “I noticed…” In stating what you heard or saw, you bring the learner’s attention to the behavior, and this opens the door to allow them to either modify the behavior or receive clarification and instruction from you in a follow-up discussion.

You can read about Levels 2 and 3 and watch videos of a preceptor using each level on the Feedback Levels page. 

More about Giving Feedback

Visit the Feedback section for more tips on how to provide feedback that will help your learners master clinical skills and continually improve their performance.