Arizona State University is committed to implement the Quality Matters standards for the design of online courses, and we are systematically building and evaluating our 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.

As discussed in the presentation, there are 41 specific review standards. This handout provides a listing of these standards.

The Quality Matters toolset and process are:

  • Based in national standards of best practice, the research literature, and instructional design principles.
  • Designed to promote student learning
  • Integral to continuous quality improvement
  • Part of an inter-institutional, faculty-driven, collegial peer review process

How does QM help you create a quality course


ASU Online has developed a syllabus template that incorporates many of the QM Standards. The template provides you areas for you to communicate important course policies relating to grading policies, required technical skills, communication policies, late work, and accommodating students with disabilities.

Course alignment

QM stresses the importance of all course learning activities and assessments being aligned with the course learning objectives. We recommend at looking carefully at the verbs you use when creating your learning objectives and then ensuring that your activities and assessments align with these verbs. A resource we use for selecting verbs is the RadioJames Learning Objective Builder (  After you have established your learning objective, you can use the QM Learning Objectives and Planning Worksheet to align your learning activities, resources, and assessments with your learning objectives.

Opportunity for course peer review

If you so choose, your course can be submitted for a QM course peer review by a panel of experienced online instructors and subject matter experts. This is an opportunity to receive substantial, constructive, and specific comments and suggestions with regard to both areas for improvement and existing strengths of your course design. Reviewers are asked to take the students’ perspective with regard to clarity. If a course meets all seventeen (21) essential standards and achieves and overall score of 81 out of 95 points, the course will receive recognition for meeting Quality Matters Review Expectations.

What does a quality online course look like?

In ASU Online we are often asked to show quality online courses. In this presentation Marc Van Home discusses the Quality Matters essential standards and provides examples for each from ASU online courses.

What Does a Quality Online Course Look Like?

How to learn more

  • Quality Matters website and community portal –
  • Applying the Quality Matters Rubric Workshop – contact Steven Crawford at ASU Online to inquire about the next time this full day workshop will be offered.