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Quality Matters


The Quality Matters process involves the use of a rubric and peer review to assess and improve the quality of online courses. The rubric is based on national standards, best practices, and instructional design principles. The peer review process focuses on using the rubric to provide constructive feedback to improve course quality. Founded in 2003 by Maryland Online, today Quality Matters has more than 900 subscribing institutions with a pool of over 5000 certified peer reviewers. In addition, Quality Matters has been recognized by Sloan C, WCET, and USDLA for excellence.


The University of Northern Colorado is committed to implementing Quality Matters standards for the design of online and hybrid courses and we are systematically building and evaluating our courses based on these rigorous, research-based standards. UNC recognizes that Quality Matters standards promote learner engagement and provide students with the tools and information they need to be successful learners. More information regarding QM may be found at the Quality Matters website.

Quality Matters at UNC

UNC has been a Quality Matters subscriber since October of 2008. Since then we have used the QM standards as guidelines for developing new online programs and courses. Quality Matters is also used as a foundation for the Teaching Academy for Online Learning and all LMS training and consulting work that the Instructional Design and Development team does with UNC faculty.

As of June 2016 approximately 260 courses have been designed to meet Quality Matters standards.

Quality Matters Training

If you would like to learn more about Quality Matters there are several training options:

  • Quality Matters Introduction – the Instructional Design and Development team can provide a short presentation about Quality Matters at your faculty meeting.
  • Teaching Academy for Online Learning – the Academy helps faculty develop new online courses using QM standards.  After the formal training, faculty members work with the IDD staff to develop their online course.
  • Planning Your Online Course – this 3 hour workshop provides a foundation in planning an online course using QM standards.  The workshop is offered toward end of each semester.
  • Applying the Rubric – this course, offered online by Quality Matters, is a pre-requisite for becoming a certified reviewer.
  • Peer Reviewer Certification – offered online by Quality Matters.

More Information

If you would like to attend QM training, have a QM presentation at a faculty meeting, or submit one of your courses for an informal reviewed by UNC reviewers, please send an email to instructional.design@unco.edu.