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Instructional design and online learning: A quality assurance study.

Instructional design and online learning: A quality assurance study.

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The purpose of this study was to investigate the difference in the evaluations of online course quality using the Quality Matters model among four groups of reviewers: instructional designers, faculty with subject-matter expertise, peer faculty with no subject-matter expertise, and administrators. A causal-comparative design was utilized to determine whether the groups differed in their ratings. Instructional designers and other respondents for this study were recruited from several listservs and Maryland colleges. The MarylandOnline Quality Matters Rubric, consisting of 40 weighted elements, was used to evaluate the quality of two online community college English courses. The online courses chosen for this study were selected from the institutions whose English courses were recognized by Quality Matters in 2007 as meeting quality standards. The data analysis revealed no significant differences among the Quality Matters ratings of the four groups (instructional designers, administrators, faculty with subject-matter expertise, and peer faculty with no subject matter expertise). Based on the findings of this study, greater involvement of instructional designers in the review process could enhance the Quality Matters evaluative method.