It's time to #QMConnect Again


October 27 - 30, 2019
Grapevine, Texas

Committing to Excellence for Learners

11th Annual Conference on Quality Assurance in Online Learning

Join the QM community this October in Grapevine, Texas, to explore how institutions across the globe are Committing to Excellence for Learners. Discover what works and what doesn’t, including how institutions are tracking their initiatives, sustaining their QA efforts, using QM course reviews and professional development, and promoting engagement for learners, faculty and other stakeholders. Get the fresh ideas, best practices, and data-driven policies you need to move the needle on your own efforts to create high-quality, technology-enhanced learning. This is your opportunity to learn from — and exchange ideas with — the community that believes quality matters.

Keynote Presentation

  • Human and Artificial Cognition: What Does it Mean to Learning Designers and Faculty?

    Monday, October 28, 2019

    We are at the early stages of a revolution in how people and society learn, think, and build knowledge. In the short span of less than a generation, we have experienced a transition from traditional knowledge structures to distributed digital environments, and now, to socio-technical systems where we share cognitive processes with technology. While the promise is evident - ranging from better medical diagnosis to improved guidance on environment actions needed - cognitive technologies also call into question the core of our humanity. Most significantly, what remains the unique domain of humans when artificial intelligence can outperform us on a growing range of tasks that were until recently exclusively ours? This presentation will provide an overview of how artificial cognitive systems impact how we learn and build knowledge - as individuals, as companies, and as a society. Challenges of ethics and bias will be explored. Emphasis will be placed on how learning designers and faculty can prepare themselves and learners for a world of human and artificial cognition.

    Dr. George Siemens is a founding President of the Society for Learning Analytics Research. He has advised government agencies in Australia, the European Union, Canada, and the United States, as well as numerous international universities, on digital learning and utilizing learning analytics for assessing and evaluating productivity gains in the education sector and improving learner results. In 2008, he pioneered massive open online courses (sometimes referred to as MOOCs). He researches, technology, networks, analytics, and openness in education.

    Dr. Siemens is Professor and Executive Director of the Learning Innovation and Networked Knowledge Research Lab at University of Texas, Arlington. He co-leads the development of the Center for Change and Complexity in Learning (C3L) at University of South Australia. He has delivered keynote addresses in more than 35 countries on the influence of technology and media on education, organizations, and society. His work has been profiled in provincial, national, and international newspapers, radio, and television. He has served as PI or Co-PI on grants funded by NSF, SSHRC (Canada), Intel, Boeing, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Soros Foundation. He has received numerous awards, including honorary doctorates from Universidad de San Martín de Porres and Fraser Valley University for his pioneering work in learning, technology, and networks. He holds an honorary professorship with University of Edinburgh.

Concentrations — More Sessions Coming Soon!

Click on the concentration headings below to see a description. Sessions are being added as they are confirmed!

  • Research/Tracking Quality Assurance

    Explore how Quality Matters (QM) can help you deliver on your commitment to excellence for learners. Presenters in this concentration will share how they use QM tools and resources — including course reviews and professional development — to achieve their quality assurance goals and improve the learner, instructor, or institution experience. Discover how you can use the methods or processes discussed to assess the impact of QM and make data-driven decisions that positively impact your institution’s quality assurance efforts.

    More sessions coming soon!

    Philosophically Speaking: Connecting QM Design and Student Success in Introduction to Philosophy

    Attendees of this session will see how QM design for Introduction to Philosophy at a large community college greatly improved the student experience, specifically with regard to navigation, and how that resulted in improved student success.

    The Impact of Quality Matters Standards on Student Evaluations of College Courses

    Attendees will hear our preliminary data and take away ideas for developing their own institutional specific research on implementing and the effectiveness of QM Standards in higher education courses.

  • Sustaining Quality

    Delivering on your online promise is not a one-time event. It is an ongoing process. Sessions in this concentration provide the tips and takeaways you need to not only implement Quality Matters but sustain it as well. Institutions will share fresh ideas related to creating a culture of quality assurance through course reviews, navigating evolving quality assurance environments, planting seeds of growth, and more!

    More sessions coming soon!

    "That's Not How You Assess That!": Developing a Norming Program for Drifting Peer Reviewers

    How do you ensure that a group of almost 100 reviewers across several campuses at a large institution are accurately assessing QM Standards? How do you ensure they have the skills to assess difficult Standards like 8.3? Join us to develop a plan.

    The Three Little Pigs: Building a Course that Stands

    Learn from the mistakes and successes of our Little Piggie builders on how to withstand the changing huffs and puffs of the wolf and build courses that withstand the test of time.

    A Day at the QM Improv: Who's Alignment is it Anyway?

    Join us in a humorous approach to building the instructional designer / faculty subject matter expert relationship. You'll not only laugh -- but also learn more about yourself and your approach to sometimes challenging situations.

  • Quality Assurance: Theory to Practice

    Continuous improvement is a vital part of the quality assurance process. Presentations in this concentration provide examples of how institutions and organizations are continuously improving and how those efforts translate into better learning experiences. Topics include alignment strategies, assessment strategies, and improving course accessibility and usability.

    More sessions coming soon!

    Applying QM to Improve Instructor Evaluation Process: The Teaching Excellence Rubric at CCCOnline

    We applied QM concepts to a formal instructor evaluation process conducted via a teaching excellence rubric. QM-inspired revisions included splitting rubric criteria into distinct parts, clarifying language, and applying the 85% principle.

  • Leading Quality Assurance

    A commitment to quality assurance takes strong leadership. That can take many forms with different stakeholders — including instructional designers, faculty, and administrators — playing various roles in guiding the commitment to excellence for learners. Presenters in this concentration share how they are leading change by setting expectations for quality assurance, including best practices for leadership challenges, quality assurance leadership models, cultivating quality assurance trust, and more.

    More sessions coming soon!

    Facilitating Multi-Campus Buy-In: Evangelizing QM in a Travelling Caravan Around the State

    Are you part of a multi-campus initiative to implement Quality Assurance and Quality Matters or are you simply trying to navigate the silos of different schools/colleges on your campus? Our session will help you build a plan to overcome those silos.

  • Engagement Strategies for Learners

    Putting quality assurance into action involves creating engaging learning environments. Sessions in this concentration explore ways to create excellence for learners through engagement with educational materials, the instructor, and each other. Practical approaches and new ideas related to key topics will be shared including assessment, course design, effective feedback, accessibility, competency-based design, social networking, and active learning.

    More sessions coming soon!

    Quality, "High Touch" Blended Learning - POSTER

    Learn from our experiences and walk away with a clear picture of how blended learning with online teachers is successfully meeting the needs of students across an entire state.

    Concept of The Day: Creating an Audio-Visual Concept Dictionary to Engage Student Learning - POSTER

    This poster presentation will provide information on how the creation of an interactive audio/visual dictionary using the evidence-based modality known as VoiceThread has  positively changed students' view of learning research concepts.

  • Engagement Strategies for Faculty

    Connecting and collaborating are key elements of engagement. Attend presentations in this concentration to gain insight into how other institutions encourage faculty to actively participate in quality assurance initiatives and deliver on their commitment to provide an outstanding learning experience. Discover innovative ideas and best practices around raising awareness, eliciting support, encouraging participation, celebrating quality assurance achievements, and more.

    Session list coming soon!
  • Engagement Strategies for Administrators and Institutions

    An active and sustainable quality assurance plan must involve individuals at all levels of an institution or organization. Learn from others how to create a culture of quality and put learners first. Presenters will share their ideas and experiences related to creating awareness and building support. They will also look at accreditation, collaboration, marketing strategies, and tactical challenges.

    Session list coming soon!
Pre-Conference Workshops

Click the headings below to see workshop titles. Sign up for workshops when completing your registration. Get a $50 discount when you sign up for two.

  • Full-Day Workshops: October 27, 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Applying the QM Rubric

    Facilitated by: Heidi Ash, Quality Matters

    Take a deep dive into the QM Rubric and uncover how it is used to review the design of blended and online courses during QM’s flagship workshop. Participants will also learn to apply the concept of alignment and draft helpful recommendations for course improvement. This workshop is intended for a broad audience, including faculty, instructional designers, administrators, and adjunct instructors. It is particularly helpful to those new to QM or those considering the adoption of a quality assurance process for online and blended learning.

    Aligning Course Elements to Support Learner Success

    Facilitated by: Kathy Tally, Quality Matters

    Delve into course- and module-level learning objectives (or competencies) as you use the alignment principle to ensure that assessments are varied and supportive of the learning objectives or competencies. Explore how to effectively integrate instructional materials, learning activities, and technology for supporting learner success on assessments and meeting course objectives. Use the Improvement Plan you create for meeting QM General Standards 2-6 to guide your course improvement. This workshop combines key components of the Connecting Learning Objectives & Assessments and Using Instructional Materials & Technology to Promote Learner Engagement workshops.

    Teaching Online: An Introduction to Online Learning

    Facilitated by: Irene Roselli, Quality Matters

    Explore best practices for teaching online with the “Teaching Online: An Introduction to Online Delivery” workshop. Participants will be introduced to the differences between teaching face-to-face and online, the roles of the online instructor, tools and strategies to develop an online presence, and how to develop an action plan for continuous improvement of online instruction.

  • Morning Half-Day Workshops: October 27, 8:00 AM - Noon
    Planning for Quality Assurance with QM

    Facilitated by: Brenda Boyd and Melissa Poole, Quality Matters

    Formerly “QM for Administrators: The Why, What, When and How of QM Implementation,” this workshop is for those interested in or charged with implementing QM at their institutions. Participants will be introduced to a Planning Framework and a quality assurance excellence model to assist in designing and executing a QM implementation strategy that supports institutional and online program goals.

    Yoga as a Metaphor for Instructional Design: Using the Practice of Yoga to Explore the Collaborative Processes of Building Quality Online Courses

    Facilitated by: Clay Ham, Virtual South Carolina

    How does one lead a team in a collaborative process of building quality online courses? The practice of yoga provides a compelling image through which to explore the presence and work of those who lead design teams. Toward that end, the metaphor can help faculty and instructional designers begin work with a design team, assume their professional persona, work the creative process, deal with competing forces to create something new, lead difficult team members, endure complications with patience, and learn from their work. This workshop is not really about yoga, but you may learn some!

    Creating Accessible Documents, Web Pages, and Images  

    Facilitated by: Cecelia Green, Quality Matters

    Strengthen your accessibility skills and learn to create accessible materials, including Microsoft Word documents, PDFs, web pages, and images. Participants will explore Microsoft Word features to create an accessible document and generate a PDF file from their Microsoft Word document. Using styles for web pages will be explored. Participants will apply the appropriate method for adding alternative text to images and tables as well as creating accessible hyperlinks.

    Connecting Research to Practice: Project Management Strategies for Instructional Designers

    Facilitated by: Heidi Schroeder, University of South Florida, Sarasota-Manatee and Denise Dejonghe, Macomb Community College

    The facilitators collaborated to research and apply project management strategies that significantly improved their course design and development projects. In this interactive workshop, they invite participants to join them in applying project management strategies to increase collaboration with colleagues, identify ways to meet Quality Matters Standards and institutional initiatives, save time, track and communicate project status to stakeholders, and formally close projects.

    Designing Effective Teaching and Significant Learning – Planning for and Integrating Course Design

    Facilitated by: Karen LaPlant, Metropolitan State University

    Instructional designers and faculty know the importance in delivering quality courses. We examine how course design leads to student success and course completion. Participants will apply the elements of designing quality courses, use materials to plan for integrating course design and discuss developing and aligning course outcomes, assessments and learning activities as they analyze their own courses to deliver significant learning.

  • Afternoon Half-Day Workshops: October 27, 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
    Pathways Toward QM Program Certification

    Facilitated by: Melissa Poole, Quality Matters

    Formerly “Implementing QM and Working Toward Program Certification,” this workshop introduces the four QM Program Certifications and review pathway options. QM Coordinators, eLearning Directors, online learning department heads, and other leaders interested in quality assurance for their online programs should attend this workshop. Participants will learn about candidacy eligibility, timelines, and needed data. Come away with an understanding of where your institution stands, as well as a plan to attain QM Program Certification.

    Strategic Planning in the Changing Landscape of Online Education

    Facilitated by: Ron Legon, Quality Matters

    Designed for senior administrators charged with oversight and/or development of strategic positioning and outcomes for their institution’s online initiatives, this workshop will guide leaders through current online education practices and patterns of development revealed in the reports and survey results from the multi-year QM-Eduventures CHLOE research project. Workshop facilitators will lead participants through a planning exercise to determine their current position and to identify longer range targets related to key topics, including student profiles, competitive environment, course and program development process, teaching and learning pedagogy and technology, support services, quality assurance process, and leadership, management, and budgeting structure. Learning outcomes should inform teams who are Planning for Quality Assurance with QM.

    The ABCs of Quality Online Learning Research: Applied, Beneficial, Centered

    Facilitated by: Bethany Simunich, Kent State University

    Kick off your exploration of online research with a discussion about recent research findings, unique challenges, and future opportunities. Then, learn how to apply the Quality Matters Research Toolkit and the Research Decision-Making Tree to student retention and/or learning. Participants will work in small groups to create basic research plans for conducting Applied research that is Beneficial to all stakeholders and Centered on previous scholarly research.

    UDL 101: Getting started with Universal Design for Learning

    Facilitated by: Beth McMahon, Northland College

    Discover how you can meet the needs and preferences of diverse learners with Universal Design for Learning (UDL) — a set of principles that guide course design. Designing courses using UDL principles moves faculty away from a “one-size-fits-all” approach and instead guides faculty in creating and teaching courses that reduce barriers to learning, increase learner engagement, and ultimately improve student learning and increase student success.
    This workshop will get you started with the implementation of UDL by introducing simple strategies, including providing choice in learning materials, choice in learning activities, choice in assessments, and various options for engagement and motivation. In this session, you will redesign a course syllabus and develop a plan for the redesign of a lesson or module. We will also discuss the intersection of QM Standards and UDL principles.

poster presenter showing handouts
There were so many great processes and resources shared. I'm enormously grateful and the timing was perfect.
Jessica Gordon
University of Missouri Extension
woman picking card from fanned deck
It's worth the trip, whether near or far. The resources are unmatched & the multiple opportunities for professional development was a welcomed sight!
Patricia Guillory
Sowela Technical Community College