QM Standards and Alignment

The Quality Matters rubric is based on 8 broad standards and the alignment of the standards with critical course components.

Quality Matters Standards
What is Alignment?
  1. Course Overview and Introduction (Standard 1)
    This information tells students what the course is about and what they need to do to get started.
  1. Learning Objectives (Standard 2)
    These provide students with measurable course-level AND module-level learning objectives that describe what they will be expected to achieve in the course.
  1. Assessment and Measurement (Standard 3)
    These give the students a chance to demonstrate their knowledge and to practice their skills AND allow you to provide feedback to help them meet the learning objectives. The assessments and measurements include self-checks, quizzes, writing assignments, projects, etc.
  1. Instructional Materials (Standard 4)
    These are the course resources and materials that you will use to deliver the instruction needed for the students to achieve the learning objectives. They include textbook readings, PPTs, supplemental readings, CDs, websites, etc.
  1. Learning Activities and Learner Interactions (Standard 5)
    These are the instructional activities that allow students to practice the knowledge and skills necessary to achieve the learning objectives. The activities include assignments, problem sets, essays, discussion forums, etc.
  1. Course Technology (Standard 6)
    This refers to the tools and media that you have selected to support the learning objectives.
  1. Learner Support (Standard 7)
    Students are provided with information on how to access the various university support services, including technical support, student support, and academic support.
  1. Accessibility and Usability (Standard 8)
    The course environment incorporates ADA standards and conforms with university policy regarding accessibility.

Alignment refers to the interdependence among the critical course components that ensures students achieve the desired learning objectives for the course.

NOTE: Learning Objectives must be created first. They serve as a guide to determining the other four critical course components

  • Assessment & Measurement
  • Learning Activities & Learner Interactions
  • Instructional Materials
  • Course Technology

Another way of explaining alignment is that everything the students are expected to learn and the skills they are expected to acquire are determined by the learning objectives. In addition, all learning activities and learner interactions (Standard 5) and all means of assessment and measurement (tests and assignments) (Standard 3) must relate directly to the learning objectives. Finally, all instructional materials (Standard 4) as well as course technology (Standard 6) should support achievement of the learning objectives.