Timely, specific, behaviorally-based feedback is a cornerstone of medical education. The authors review basic tenets of effective feedback delivery in the context of potential challenges faced by (non-United States) international medical graduates (IMGs).
The authors provide a brief summary of the elements of effective feedback, with illustrations of potential barriers for IMGs.
Many IMGs were trained in a hierarchical system, where feedback was delivered publicly, in a manner associated with shame and embarrassment. These experiences, combined with the challenge of functioning in a second language and anxieties over exposing weaknesses, present some barriers that make it more difficult for them to participate in feedback inquiry, self-reflection, and reciprocal feedback.
These challenges can be mitigated by acknowledging the anxieties that learners may have, fostering a learning culture that values feedback as an expected and important part of all learning, ensuring that all (learners and supervisors) are trained in feedback skills, and clear setting of expectations.