Quality Matters (QM), a global organization leading quality assurance in online and innovative digital teaching and learning environments, has recently released their newest edition of the QM Higher Education Rubric. The release of the QM 7th Edition Rubric and accompanying forty-four Specific Review Standards occurred on July 5, 2023. The release will impact Academic Partnerships’ institutional partners who are also QM subscribers.
The changes to the rubric were highly anticipated, and through the training course and upon careful review of the annotated rubric, the AP team has learned that the changes will minimally impact Academic Partnership’s current course reviews as they are online, accelerated, asynchronous courses.
That said, there are two specific review standard changes that will immediately impact course quality reviews:
- Specific Review Standard 3.6: Recommends that assessments provide guidance to learners about academic integrity. This is a new addition to the rubric and is considered an “important” standard worth one point.
- Specific Review Standard 8.4: Recommends that all images in the course be made accessible. While this is a new addition to the rubric, this recommendation was previously found in the 6th Edition Specific Review Standard 8.3. This new standard is considered a “very important” standard worth two points.
In addition to these standard changes, there are also changes to wording found in many specific review standards; therefore, faculty and program leadership should review the full annotated rubric carefully with guidance from their Quality Matters Coordinator. However, AP’s Quality Review team does not believe that these wording changes will impact most course reviews. For more information and guidance on the content of the rubric, check out the new Anatomy of a Quality Course.
Because of these minimal changes to the rubric, AP’s team of QM 7th Edition Rubric trained quality reviewers will began reviewing courses with this rubric beginning July 5, 2023. The quality review team is also offering a webinar session on the quality review process and new rubric on August 3, 2023, and registration is open for all AP partners. AP’s instructional design team is prepared to consult with faculty currently developing courses on the 7th Edition Rubric, and their recommendations will be informed by this new edition.
Alongside the release of the rubric, QM is currently offering a 7th Edition Rubric training course for QM role holders. All AP employees who are QM role holders including Quality Reviewers, Instructional Designers, Academic Program Planners, and others have been enrolled in this course and are currently completing their certification.