With the rapid growth of online education at West Chester University, the Teaching and Learning Center looked to ensure that our online courses are built upon research-backed standards. Therefore, we partnered with Quality Matters (QM), a non-profit organization that specializes in standards for quality assurance for online course and program design. The Teaching and Learning Center staff and a number of faculty members have been trained on the QM rubric, standards, and course review process.
The QM rubric is broken down into eight General Standards:
- Course Overview and Introduction
- Learning Objectives
- Assessment and Measurement
- Instructional Materials
- Learning Activities and Learner Interaction
- Course Technology
- Learner Support
- Accessibility and Usability
Each of the General Standards are further broken down into Specific Review Standards. In total, there are 42 Specific Review Standards. A course meets QM certification if it meets the standards at an 85% level.
Faculty members from all five colleges at WCU have prepared their online courses for review with the assistance of the instructional design team. Once a course has been submitted to QM, it is reviewed by a peer review team which consists of a Team Chair, Subject Matter Expert, and External Reviewer. We have worked with peer review team members from all over the country. WCU faculty members have also been certified and are eligible to serve on a review team.
After obtaining QM certification, faculty members can display the QM Certification Mark on the syllabus and D2L course homepage. The mark informs our students that the course has clear expectations, meaningful content, and engaging activities.
The Teaching and Learning Center runs an initiative each academic year in which faculty members are compensated for preparing their courses for review and obtaining QM certification. If you’re interested in learning more, reach out to your assigned instructional designer.
For more information please contact the Teaching and Learning Center via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.