From conferences to webinars to Twitter, we love connecting with the K-12 community. Each interaction provides an opportunity to exchange ideas, collaborate on challenges and move the needle on quality assurance in online learning.
An important part of the conversations is the questions you ask. Your inquiries highlight your commitment to delivering on your online promise and your quest to set your students up for success. The answers to your questions can not only help you but the entire community. Here are the top three most frequently asked questions along with the answers you need.
Question 1: How can I make my course accessible for all learners?
Accessibility is a topic that educators around the globe grapple with daily. It’s a complicated issue with many components that need to be considered, including alternative text, video captions, hyperlinks, and readability. Thankfully, there are resources that can help.
- Accessibility and Usability Resource Site (AURS) AURS — Developed and maintained by members of the QM community, AURS is the go-to — and FREE — resource for educators to get information on how to address key accessibility and usability concerns.
- K-12 Accessibility Collaborative Team — Headed by members of the K-12 community, the accessibility team works together to reflect on accessibility needs within a course. Additionally, real-life mock scenarios are provided throughout the year to encourage open discussion and bring awareness to accessibility within online courses.
- Conference Presentations — Presented by both K-12 and HE institutions, our conference archives contain numerous presentations on accessibility. Search by keyword to see how others are addressing the accessibility issue.
- Portland Community College (PCC) Accessibility Guide — Created by PCC’s Distance Education & Instructional Support team, this comprehensive guide covers a multitude of topics, including how to make complex images accessible.
Question 2: How can I get my course reviewed?
As you know, a well-designed course is more likely to engage learners and positively affect their performance. Having your course reviewed provides insight into the design of your course and its ability to set students up for success. QM offers a variety of review options to benchmark your course and see how it meets the needs of students.
- Self Reviews — Take advantage of QM’s Self-Review Tool in the Course Review Management System to informally review your course and examine different design components.
- Internal Reviews — Engage in this collaborative review process to receive feedback and identify areas of strength and weakness.
- Custom Reviews — Use custom reviews to incorporate your own standards into the process.
- Preparatory Reviews — Add a Master Reviewer to the mix and receive external insight into what areas of your course need improvement.
- QM-Managed Official Course Reviews — Get outside validation of the quality work you’re doing around online course design. Plus, if your course meets Standards, you’ll receive the QM Certification Mark — the internationally-recognized symbol of quality course design.
Other review options are available. Contact the K-12 team to discuss which option is right for you.
Question 3: How can I become a QM-Certified Course Reviewer?
Acting in a QM-Certified Reviewer role offers benefits for you, and helps you contribute to the quality assurance process. Most importantly, it allows you to directly impact the quality of online courses and programs. To become a QM-Certified Reviewer, follow these four simple steps:
- Complete the K-12 Applying the QM Rubric Workshop
- Complete the Reviewer Course
- Meet the Requirements (must have taught online or developed online courses in the past 18 months)
- Complete the Reviewer Applications