Quality Matters and Online Teaching


Quality Matters™ in Online Learning. Taking an active role in managing your commitment to quality assurance and continuous improvement is an important step toward learner success.

What is Quality Matters™ (QM)? The gold standard for courses, programs, and more. From general to specific, QM provides a pathway for benchmarking quality. Objectively. Repeatedly. Predictably. A quality assurance system that helps you deliver a well-conceived, well-designed, and well-presented course or program with review, improvement and certification quality. Quality assurance begins with a set of standards.


The Quality Matters™ (QM) Rubric is a set of 8 general standards and 41 specific standards used to evaluate the design of online and blended courses. The Rubric is complete with annotations that explain the application of the standards and the relationship among them. A scoring system and set of online tools facilitate the evaluation by a team of reviewers.

Unique to the Quality Matters Rubric is the concept of alignment. This occurs when critical course components – Learning Objectives (2), Assessment and Measurement (3), Instructional Materials (4), Learner Interaction and Engagement (5), and Course Technology (6) – work together to ensure students achieve desired learning outcomes. Specific standards included in Alignment are indicated in the rubric annotations.

The eight General Standards of the Higher Ed Rubric include:

  1. Course Overview and Introduction
  2. Learning Objectives (Competencies)
  3. Assessment and Measurement
  4. Instructional Materials
  5. Learner Interaction and Engagement
  6. Course Technology
  7. Learner Support
  8. Accessibility and Usability*

* Meeting QM’s accessibility Standards does not guarantee or imply that specific country/federal/state/local accessibility regulations are met.

Attached HERE is the Quality Matters™ Rubric* Standards Fifth Edition guide
*QM Members using this Rubric include individual faculty, four-year accredited colleges and universities, and community colleges.

QM Course Reviews

Click HERE to view the key factors that will affect the structure of the course review process using the Higher Education Quality Matters Rubric.

Below is a video of an instructor describing the benefits of putting a course up for Quality Matters Review. What makes for a well-designed online course?


QM Links

Want to learn more about Quality Matters? Below are links to a schedule of courses you can take and descriptions of those courses.

Higher Ed Case Studies

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