Quality Matters

Quality Matters (QM) is a faculty-centered, peer review process that is designed to certify the quality of online and blended courses.

What is Quality Matters?

The QM rubric is a research-based tool consisting of 8 general standards and 43 specific criteria that describe best practices in online course design. The QM process is designed to be continuous, collegial, and collaborative. The rubric and associated annotations are based on best practices that promote student learning and instructional design principles that are part of good design. The rubric is supported by a thorough review of the literature and is updated every three years to reflect new techniques and technologies that have become available.

The course review process involves a review of a course by a team of three trained, certified peer reviewers who are all experienced online faculty. This faculty driven process is intended to be diagnostic with the overall goal of course improvement.

QM Implementation Plan Approved


The QM Implementation Plan submitted by Northland Community and Technical College was approved by the Quality Matters Academic Advisory Council in April 2013.

The main beneficiaries of QM are the online students who take a course that was designed to meet QM standards. A QM Certified course provides the online student with assurance that the course has been planned, developed, and designed with all components to make the learning experience a success. A list of Northland courses that have received the QM certification seal can be found here.

Northland Community and Technical College is committed to implementing the Quality Matters standards for the design of online and hybrid courses, and we are building and evaluating courses based on these rigorous, research-based standards. The Quality Matters standards assure that the online components of these courses promote learner engagement and provide students with all the tools and information they need to be successful learners. More information regarding Quality Matters may be found at www.qmprogram.org.

QM Recognized Courses at Northland

The following online courses were developed and are currently taught by faculty from Northland Community and Technical College.

Each course listed below has demonstrated through a formal peer review process that it has met Quality Matters Standards for course design. A team of three trained and certified peer reviewers reviewed each course using the Quality Matters Process. The national standards these courses had to meet describe the key elements that should be included in the design of an online course in order to promote student learning, student retention, and overall student success. Northland's Early Childhood & Paraprofessional program has all its program required courses quality approved.

QM recognized courses are listed in QM's national database of certified courses and each faculty member has been given a QM seal to display with their online course. Learn more about the Quality Matters course reviews at the Minnesota Online Quality Initiative website and at the Quality Matters website.

2017 BIOL2252 Anatomy & Physiology I Tina Moody
2017 BIOL2254 Anatomy & Physiology II Tina Moody
2015 SSCI1101 Human Relations Bonnie Andrys
2015 BUSN1110 Intro to Business Shannon Nelson
2015 MKTG2120 Supervisory Leadership Shannon Nelson
2014 CDEV2220 Integrating Play Peggy Rogers
2014 CDEV2236 Occupational Experience Peggy Rogers
2014 CDEV2244 Parent & Professional Peggy Rogers
2014 HPER2270 Health & Wellness Elizabeth McMahon & Tammy Magness
2014 CDEV2229 Imaginative Learning Peggy Rogers
2014 HLTH1126 Therapeutic Communication Mary Amundson
2014 MATH0094 Pre-College Algebra Farah Rahnama
2013 BIOL1004 Intro to Anatomy & Physiology Tina Moody
2013 BIOL2131 Nutrition Kathy Hushchle
2013 BIOL2221 Microbiology Kathy Hushchle
2013 CDEV1105 Development & Guidance Peggy Rogers
2013 CDEV1107 Intro to Early Education Peggy Rogers
2013 CDEV2240 Observing & Assessing Peggy Rogers
2013 CDEV2252 Paraprofessional Role Peggy Rogers
2013 ENGL0085 Reading & Writing II Sherry Lindquist
2013 ENGL1111 Composition I Jennifer Dahlen
2013 ENGL1112 Composition II Jennifer Dahlen
2013 HIST1101 Western Civilization I Aliza Olson
2013 HLTH1106 Medical Terminology Dorinda Sorvig & Elizabeth McMahon
2013 MATH0090 Introductory Algebra Barb Weber
2013 MATH1110 College Algebra Barb Weber
2013 PLSC1102 American Government Aliza Olson
2012 ENGL0095 Reading & Writing III Sherry Lindquist
2012 HLTH2208 Pathophysiology Elizabeth McMahon
2012 MATH0098 Intermediate Algebra Barb Weber

Northland is a participant in the Minnesota Online Quality Initiative. This graphic shows the total number of Quality Matters recognized courses in Minnesota in the last five years as well as the number by institution.

Image credit: Minnesota Online Quality Initiative

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