Monday, September 10, 2012

Quality Course Design

Good course design is essential to effective online learning. At the University of the District of Columbia, we follow the QualityMatters (QM) nationally benchmarked design standards. QM is a leader in quality assurance for online education and has received national recognition for its peer-based approach and continuous improvement in online education and student learning. The QM design standards utilize a rubric that is based in national standards of best practice, the research literature, and instructional design principles. The rubric and peer-review process are designed to assess courses with an eye to ensure that online and hybrid courses promote student learning.

The simplicity of the QM Rubric is that it follows eight key areas that guide the development of effective course design. The eight areas include: 1. Course Overview and Introduction; 2. Learning Objectives (Competencies); 3. Assessment and Measurement; 4. Instructional Materials; 5. Learner Interaction and Engagement; 6. Course Technology; 7. Learner Support; and 8. Accessibility.
The successes of Quality Matters have resulting in more than 500 institutions from around the world subscribing and implementing the review process. Simply put, the standards are easy to follow, logical, and effectual.

When instructors think about designing an online or hybrid course, we urge them to come to the Center for Academic Technology (CAT) to learn more about the QM design standards. Moreover, many of the standards are effective in designing a collaborative and well aligned face-to-face course. Several instructors have commented that after learning how to apply the standards, they implement many of the design principles into their traditional courses and have a deeper understanding of alignment and assessment.

1 comment:

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