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Quality Matters. Jennifer Strickland, PhD , jennifer.strickland@mcmail.maricopa.edu. What is it anyway?. Quality Matters (QM) is a faculty-centered, peer review process designed to certify the quality of online and hybrid courses and online components

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Quality Matters

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Quality Matters

Jennifer Strickland, PhD, jennifer.strickland@mcmail.maricopa.edu

What is it anyway?

  • Quality Matters (QM) is a faculty-centered, peer review process designed to certify the quality of online and hybrid courses and online components

  • A faculty-driven, collaborative peer review process

  • Committed to continuous quality improvement

  • Based in national standards of best practice, the research literature and instructional design principles

  • Designed to promote student learning and success

Course Meets Quality Expectations

Course Revision

Faculty Course Developers

Quality Matters Course Peer Review Process


National Standards & Research Literature



Faculty Reviewers


Peer Course Review


Instructional Designers

QM Certified Peer Reviewers

  • QM-Certified Peer Reviewers

    • How to interpret the standards (with examples and annotations)

    • How to evaluate a course (hands-on with sample course)

  • Reviews are conducted by teams of three peer reviewers

    • Master Reviewer/Chair

    • Peer reviewer (external)

    • Peer reviewer (SME)

  • 700+ faculty trained to review online courses using the rubric

  • individuals from 158 different institutions in 28 states

  • More than 2,500 faculty and instructional design staff participated in Quality Matters workshops

Quality Assurance

The Rubric is the Core of Quality Matters

  • 40 specific elements across 8 broad areas (general standards) of course quality

  • Detailed annotations and examples of good practice for all 40 standards

  • http://www.qualitymatters.org/FIPSE.htm

Course Alignment

  • 5 of the 8 general standards should align:

    • Course Overview and Introduction

    • Learning Objectives

    • Assessment and Measurement

    • Resources and Materials

    • Learner Interaction

    • Course Technology

    • Learner Support

    • ADA Compliance

Key components must align


  • 1.1 Instructions make clear how to get started and where to find various course components.

  • 2.1The course learning objectives describe outcomes that are measurable.

  • 3.1 The types of assessments selected measure the stated learning objectives and are consistent with course activities and resources.

Common Areas for Improvement (2006-2007, based on 95 reviews)

  • Learning objectives at module/unit level (II.2): 45%

  • Self-check/practice with quick feedback (III.5): 42%

  • Instructions to students on meeting learning objectives (II.4): 40%

  • Alternatives to auditory/visual content (VIII.2): 39%

  • Clear standards for instructor availability(V.3): 37%

Maricopa Quality Matters

  • Maricopa/MCLI is the statewide consortium lead

  • Ten QM Maricopa Colleges

  • Other online Course Evaluation Resources

  • 67 faculty members, instructional designers and technologists are certified peer reviewers

  • College-Based Steering Team

Impact on Faculty Support

  • Nationally, 89% of respondents would recommend the QM review process to others

  • Sample comments

    • I was too close to see what could be improved.

    • Provides a great way to get an objective view of your course.

    • It made all of my online courses better.

    • It provides a view from a more student-oriented perspective.

    • It provides a look into potential student problems areas for course completion.

    • Many elements that might contribute to a student withdrawing can be eliminated.

QM is about peer review

QM is about course design

Not evaluation

Not teaching;

QM is about improving Student Success online

Through effective and consistent course design

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