Re: early kyu expectations
I'll second what Cherie said, and add a note about the kind of feedback I've received and found helpful. As a student I really appreciate what my teacher does. I'm sure there are always technical points that will need to be addressed, but those will be done over time, in class. The feedback I have heard immediately after each exam focuses primarily on some quality I need to work on.
For instance, following my 5th kyu test the feedback was that I was "being cautious" in my technique. Indeed, I felt like I was sort of "going through the motions." After my 4th kyu exam Sensei asked if I was nervous. I hadn't been aware of it, but given the opportunity to look at that, yes, I was.
Each time that kind of feedback gave me something clear and memorable I could work on between then and my next exam (and onward). It was simple enough that I could easily remember it, and rang true in a way that burned itself into my daily awareness in training. Focusing on being more certain and committed in my application of technique, and more relaxed and confident in my aikido, have I'm sure made a bigger difference in both my technical skill and in "how I show up" than any post-exam technical corrections or pointers could have.