What is Quality Matters?

Quality Matters (QM) is a national benchmark for online course design that certifies the quality of online and hybrid courses. DU has been a Quality Matters subscriber since March 2013.

DU’s Internal Quality Matters Standards

General Standard 1: Course Overview and Introduction

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

1.2 Learners are introduced to the purpose and structure of the course.

1.3 Etiquette expectations (sometimes called “netiquette”) for online discussions, email, and other forms of communication are clearly stated.

1.4 Course and/or institutional policies with which the learner is expected to comply are clearly stated, or a link to current policies is provided.

1.5 Minimum technology requirements are clearly stated and instructions for use provided.

1.6 Prerequisite knowledge in the discipline and/or any required competencies are clearly stated.

1.7 Minimum technical skills expected of the learner are clearly stated.

1.8 The self-introduction by the instructor is appropriate and is available online.

1.9 Learners are asked to introduce themselves to the class.

General Standard 2: Learning Objectives (Competencies)

2.1 The course learning objectives, or course/program competencies, describe outcomes that are measurable.

2.2 The module/unit learning objectives or competencies describe outcomes that are measurable and consistent with the course-level objectives or competencies.

2.3 All learning objectives or competencies are stated clearly and written from the learner’s perspective.

2.4 The relationship between learning objectives or competencies and course activities is clearly stated.

2.5 The Learning objectives or competencies are suited to the level of the course.

General Standard 3: Assessment & Measurement

3.1 The assessments measure the stated learning objectives or competencies.

3.2 The course grading policy is stated clearly.

3.3 Specific and descriptive criteria are provided for the evaluation of learners’ work and are tied to the course grading policy.

General Standard 4: Instructional Materials

4.1 The instructional materials contribute to the achievement of the stated course and module/unit learning objectives or competencies.

4.2 Both the purpose of the instructional materials and how the materials are to be used for learning activities are clearly explained.

General Standard 5: Course Activities and Learner Interaction

5.1 The learning activities promote the achievement of the stated learning objectives or competencies.

5.2 Learning activities provide opportunities for interaction that support active learning.

5.3 The instructor’s plan for classroom response time and feedback on assignments is clearly stated.

5.4 The requirements for learner interaction are clearly stated.

General Standard 6: Course Technology

6.1 The tools used in the course support the learning objectives or competencies.

6.2 Course tools promote learner engagement and active learning.

6.3 Technologies required in the course are readily obtainable.

General Standard 7: Learner Support

7.1 The course instructions articulate or link to a clear description of the technical support offered and how to obtain it.

7.2 Course instructions articulate or link to the institution’s accessibility policies and services.

General Standard 8: Accessibility and Usability

8.1 Course navigation facilitates ease of use.

8.2 Information is provided about the accessibility of all technologies required in the course.

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