Virtual School Meanderings

July 1, 2020

New Workshop For Ramping Up Course Design

Note this up-coming professional learning opportunity from QM.

Maximize Your Efforts to Achieve Quality

blue circle with an illustration of a road inside and a destination markerAs this spring highlighted, there is a big difference between delivering face-to-face courses remotely and creating online experiences that engage and support student success.

That’s why institutions and individuals, including Javed Yusuf from the University of the South Pacific, turned to QM — utilizing research-supported tools and resources to bolster their efforts, “Over the last few weeks, I developed our University’s Course Readiness for Remote Online Teaching Checklist for faculty to self-review the readiness of their courses for online remote teaching for the remainder of the semester. This checklist was adapted from the Quality Matters Rubric and the QM Emergency Remote Instruction Checklist. So, in this COVID-19 crisis, QM has been very central in how the University responded to its L&T continuity.”

Based on feedback from the QM community, we developed a new workshop — Introduction to QM — to provide faculty and staff with insight into how QM can help. Participants will:

  • Explore the power of thoughtful course design
  • Gain an understanding of how research-supported design standards support student success
  • Learn how to leverage QM review tools to ensure course quality

This two-week facilitated workshop will help you and your team see how QM is different from other review processes. You’ll come away with a plan for how to maximize QM tools and processes for creating quality courses and programs.

Workshop cost: $100/member; $150/nonmember

Limited sessions available — July 7, July 28 and August 18 — register today!

Learn More
Quality Matters QM
Quality Matters (QM) is the global organization leading quality assurance in online and innovative digital teaching and learning environments. It provides a scalable quality assurance system for online and blended learning used within and across organizations. When you see QM Certification Marks on courses or programs, it means they have met QM Course Design Standards or QM Program Review Criteria in a rigorous review process.
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Our email marketing is permission-based. If you received a mailing from us, our records indicate that (a) you have expressly shared this address for the purpose of receiving information in the future (“opt-in”), or (b) you have registered or purchased or otherwise have an existing relationship with us. We respect your time and attention by controlling the frequency of our mailings.

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QM Quality Matters, Inc.

1997 Annapolis Exchange Parkway
Suite 300

Annapolis, MD 21401

June 19, 2020

Are Your Courses Ready For Schools To Adopt?

A newsletter from Quality Matters.

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News for K-12 Publishers

June 2020

Schools Seek QM-Certified Courses
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Schools and districts use the QM-Certified Course Search to identify QM-Certified courses. The tool allows users to look for courses in several ways, including by vendor and subject area. Want your courses to show up when buyers are looking? QM Certification is earned when a course meets Standards during an official course review — explore your options and submit your courses for review today.

Courses Must Meet Needs
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We speak with schools and districts every day. Here are the top things they look for in a packaged course:

  1. Alignment to State Standards — it is critical that courses meet standards for the state in which they are taught.
  2. Student-facing Alignment — students should be able to see how assessments, activities and materials align to the learning objectives.
  3. Varied Assessments — multiple ways to measure student understanding of learning objectives should be provided.
  4. Assessment Selection and Sequencing — make sure your courses allow teachers to personalize the experience for their students.
  5. Engaging Activities — course activities need to promote student-instructor, student-content and student-student interaction.
  6. Accessibility — courses need to be accessible to all students.
  7. Differentiated Instructional Materials — teachers want a breadth of instructional materials that reflect a culturally diverse perspective.
Quick Tip: Personalization
quick tip
Let schools and districts know how your courses can be personalized. Show them where they can add critical elements such as an introduction video, etiquette expectations, academic integrity standards, and the institution’s accessibility policies and services. These course components — which help optimize the student experience — are not in the K-12 Publisher Rubric but are found in the QM K-12 Rubric for schools and districts. To better understand the differences between the two Rubrics, review both the K-12 Publisher Standards and K-12 Standards.
Congratulations!
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The organizations listed have received certification under the QM K-12 Publisher Rubric Standards for the number of courses shown.

136 Edmentum
130 Pearson Online & Blended Learning
35 Founders Education
31 Apex Learning, Inc.
26 Odysseyware
24 Edgenuity
21 Strongmind
18 Florida Virtual School Global
16 Global Personalized Academics
13 Shmoop University, Inc.
9 Pointful Education
1 eBrigage/Blue Foundation
1 Compass Learning
1 WHRO

View All QM-Certified Courses >>

Get in front of K-12 educators at this fall’s reimagined QM Connect Conference. Become a sponsor or exhibitor today. Contact QM’s Director of Community Engagement & Marketing Jim Snyder for details.

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Copyright © 2020 QM Quality Matters, Inc., All rights reserved.
Our email marketing is permission-based. If you received a mailing from us, our records indicate that (a) you have expressly shared this address for the purpose of receiving information in the future (“opt-in”), or (b) you have registered or purchased or otherwise have an existing relationship with us. We respect your time and attention by controlling the frequency of our mailings.

Our mailing address is:

QM Quality Matters, Inc.

1997 Annapolis Exchange Parkway
Suite 300

Annapolis, MD 21401

June 16, 2020

Your Research Webinar Recording + The Accessibility Resources You Need

This webinar recording from Quality Matters may be of interest to some readers.

Make Your Courses Accessible
for All Learners

Thank you for your interest in online learning research. The recording for the webinar “Digital Accessibility: Benchmarking QM Institutional Policies and Practices in 2020” is now available. Please note, this link is valid for 30 days. After that, you can find the webinar video on our YouTube Channel. To augment your learning experience, review the follow-up Q&A page, which contains answers to questions we did not have time to cover during the webinar as well as a link to the presentation slides.

During the webinar, Barbra Frey and Rae Mancilla shared preliminary results from their 2019 survey on digital accessibility. The results revealed that while many institutions view digital accessibility as a high priority, barriers remain to addressing this important topic, including a lack of resources. Here are some that can help.

accessibility icons inside talk bubbles
Address Accessibility Challenges
Explore the Accessibility and Usability Resource Site to find solutions for course accessibility issues — or get your questions answered by our expert moderators. This free resource provides critical information on accessibility topics such as alternative text, hyperlinks, video captioning, readability, and color contrast. Special topics are available as well, including the recently added Culturally Responsive Teaching with a Universal Design for Learning Perspective.
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Tackle Accessibility as a Team
Empower yourself and your colleagues with the knowledge needed to create accessible instructional materials. Designed for a team of 10 or more, our dedicated, synchronous Making Materials Accessible QM Live! Series covers key topics, including providing accessible web content, creating accessible documents and captioning videos.
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Expand Your Knowledge
Discover how one university is addressing student accessibility services as well as other support services to ensure that all students succeed in the online environment. Watch “Y’all Means All: An HBCU’s Holistic Approach to Diverse Online Learner Support” to learn more about the tools and resources you can use to meet the learning needs of all students as well as how to integrate support services into your course.
Do you have a research interest you’d like to see addressed in a QM research webinar? Let us know. Send your ideas to QM’s Manager of Research & Development Barbra Burch.
Quality Matters QM
Quality Matters (QM) is the global organization leading quality assurance in online and innovative digital teaching and learning environments. It provides a scalable quality assurance system for online and blended learning used within and across organizations. When you see QM Certification Marks on courses or programs, it means they have met QM Course Design Standards or QM Program Review Criteria in a rigorous review process.
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Copyright © 2020 QM Quality Matters, Inc., All rights reserved.
Our email marketing is permission-based. If you received a mailing from us, our records indicate that (a) you have expressly shared this address for the purpose of receiving information in the future (“opt-in”), or (b) you have registered or purchased or otherwise have an existing relationship with us. We respect your time and attention by controlling the frequency of our mailings.

Our mailing address is:

QM Quality Matters, Inc.

1997 Annapolis Exchange Parkway
Suite 300

Annapolis, MD 21401

June 13, 2020

Here’s Your QM/SmarterServices Webinar Recording

This recording may be of interest to some readers.

Resources to Prepare for Fall and Beyond

Thank you for your interest in, “Academic Continuity Tools: Equipping Faculty, Students, and their Families for Online Learning.” The webinar recording is now available. Please note, this link is valid for 30 days. After that, you can find the webinar video on our YouTube Channel.

As Dr. Adkins noted in the webinar, institutions are facing the great unknown — what will happen this fall? The majority of participants indicated they are preparing for a hybrid learning situation. Regardless of your plan, here are some resources to help you prepare and be ready to support student success.

illustration of headphones with the words QM Live in the middle
Build Your Skillset 
Dive into key online learning topics such as discussion board rubricsmeasurable objectives and active learning strategies with QM Live! workshops. These short and interactive synchronous sessions are available for groups of 10 or more, providing the perfect opportunity for members of your institution to learn together. You can also build your own series to create customized professional development.
illustration of person crossing a bridge
Cross the Bridge to Quality
Build on your emergency remote instruction successes with “Bridge to Quality: A QM Online Course Design Guide.” Available for both higher education and K-12, the web-based guide provides you with a step-by-step plan to complete the hands-on, iterative work that is central to creating a quality course.
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Become an Online Learner
Gain a better understanding of the online student experience by becoming one yourself. Participate in a QM workshop or course to explore the student perspective and enhance your online learning knowledge. Review the professional development schedule to identify upcoming opportunities.
Looking for more helpful content? Recordings of all
QM Online Learning Webinars
 can be found on our YouTube channel.
Quality Matters QM
Quality Matters (QM) is the global organization leading quality assurance in online and innovative digital teaching and learning environments. It provides a scalable quality assurance system for online and blended learning used within and across organizations. When you see QM Certification Marks on courses or programs, it means they have met QM Course Design Standards or QM Program Review Criteria in a rigorous review process.
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Copyright © 2020 QM Quality Matters, Inc., All rights reserved.
Our email marketing is permission-based. If you received a mailing from us, our records indicate that (a) you have expressly shared this address for the purpose of receiving information in the future (“opt-in”), or (b) you have registered or purchased or otherwise have an existing relationship with us. We respect your time and attention by controlling the frequency of our mailings.

Our mailing address is:

QM Quality Matters, Inc.

1997 Annapolis Exchange Parkway
Suite 300

Annapolis, MD 21401

June 3, 2020

Free Research Webinar: Digital Accessibility

Note this QM webinar reminder.

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QM Research Webinar

Digital Accessibility: Benchmarking QM Institutional Policies and Practices in 2020

Tuesday, June 9, at 1:00 p.m. Eastern

Over the past decade, there has been an increased focus on digital accessibility in higher education. So where do things stand today? And what practices and policies do institutions have in place? To find out, a benchmarking study was administered to over 200 QM Coordinators in November 2019. During this free webinar, preliminary findings will be shared, including:

  • Institutional practices and policies
  • Roles and responsibilities for ensuring compliance
  • Captioning tools and practices
  • Budgeting
  • Professional development needs

Don’t miss the opportunity to discover solutions for creating and maintaining learning environments that are accessible to all — join us on June 9 at 1:00 p.m. ET.

Register Now
Presented By:
Barbara Frey
Barbara A. Frey, D.Ed., is an Adjunct Assistant Professor with the School of Education at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and a Senior Optimization Consultant with CampusWorks, Inc. She is also an active Quality Matters Facilitator, Master Reviewer and Researcher. Barbara’s background includes over 25 years of experience as a Senior Instructional Designer with Pitt Online at the University of Pittsburgh and as an Assistant Professor with the World Campus at Pennsylvania State University and the Global Campus of Colorado State University. In addition, Barbara is co-author of the book “Distinctive Distance Education Design: Models for Differentiated Instruction” and a scholar with the International Board of Standards for Training, Performance and Instruction.
Rae Mancilla
Rae Mancilla, Ed.D., is a Senior Instructional Designer with the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. She brings to bear over a decade of design and project management expertise in developing fully online and blended programs, including large-scale course development. Rae is also an active educator and researcher, teaching graduate and undergraduate courses on instructional technology, and is passionate about faculty development for online learning. Her research interests include the professional development of instructional designers, language learning and technology, digital accessibility, and program evaluation.
globe with magnifying glassCan’t make it? No need to register — recordings of QM Research Webinars can be found on our YouTube channel one week after the webinar. Find information about the Research Webinar Series and other research-related resources in the Research section of the QM website.
Quality Matters QM
Quality Matters (QM) is the global organization leading quality assurance in online and innovative digital teaching and learning environments. It provides a scalable quality assurance system for online and blended learning used within and across organizations. When you see QM Certification Marks on courses or programs, it means they have met QM Course Design Standards or QM Program Review Criteria in a rigorous review process.
Twitter
Facebook
YouTube
LinkedIn
View this email in your browser
Copyright © 2020 QM Quality Matters, Inc., All rights reserved.
Our email marketing is permission-based. If you received a mailing from us, our records indicate that (a) you have expressly shared this address for the purpose of receiving information in the future (“opt-in”), or (b) you have registered or purchased or otherwise have an existing relationship with us. We respect your time and attention by controlling the frequency of our mailings.

Our mailing address is:

QM Quality Matters, Inc.

1997 Annapolis Exchange Parkway
Suite 300

Annapolis, MD 21401

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