Quality Guidelines for Course Development

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1 1 Quality Guidelines for Course Development The following guidelines are based on the Rubric for Online Instruction (ROI) created by Chico State University and on an adaptation of the instructional design tips created by Joan Van Duzer (Humboldt State University). The ROI is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License. A copy of this license is available at: The six broad categories below are defined by quality guidelines. After each subcategory, there is a list of indicators expected to be present for the course to be in compliance. Category 1: Learner Support and Resources A. Course contains information for online learner support and links to campus resources. To comply with this guideline, the course should minimally contain a learner information page or module including the following: Tips for being a successful online student General tips to take the course Link to e-library and instructions to access library resources online from both on- and offcampus locations Instructions for how to conduct online research Basic guidelines to format of papers and/or citations (e.g., APA, MLA, etc.) Link to the testing center and instructions for proctored exams Links to campus student service units (e.g., Student Success Center, Disability Office, etc.) Information/tutorials on how to use software required by ourse Contact information for technical support or Help Desk Minimum computer hardware and software requirements List of alternative open-source software Sources for any required plug-ins (and links) Tutorial(s) to use the LMS tools commonly used in the course (Blackboard or Moodle) B. Course provides course specific resources, some contact information for instructor, department, and program. To comply with this guideline, the course should minimally contain: Contact information for the instructor Contact information for academic department or advisor Information on additional related courses or program Link(s) to Bookstore(s) to order textbooks or other instructional materials Estimated amount of time needed for completing course requirements

2 2 C. Course offers access to resources supporting course content and different learning abilities. Link(s) to web sites with supporting information relevant to course content Link(s) to web sites of organizations or associations related to course content Glossary of terms or links to definitions of key vocabulary Link(s) to external multimedia resources Category 2: Online Organization and Design A. Course is organized and navigable Key components and structure of the course are easy to identify Main course elements are easily located (e.g., syllabus, resources, course content, interaction tools, etc.) Instructional materials required are easily located If course content is structured in chronological format, brief descriptions of the content covered during that time span are provided A course schedule is available B. Syllabus identifies and delineates the role the online environment will play in the course. To comply with this guideline, the course syllabus should minimally contain: Course description from the ISU catalog Program outcomes targeted by the course Course goals and learning objectives A lists of all required assignments, the weights given to each, due dates, and penalties for late submissions Course materials (e.g., textbook information, including e-book options and supplementary websites, subscription to streaming content, etc.) Policy statements regarding academic integrity, copyright, and accessibility Communication policies, including participation, netiquette, ways to reach the instructor, and expectations of availability of and turnaround time for contact with instructor Course schedule (what happens when) Clear timeline for student participation C. Aesthetic design presents and communicates course information clearly. Typeface is easy to read Sufficient contrast between text and background Appropriate images supporting course content add visual interest Course pages are kept to a comfortable length D. Consistency in course Layout of course is visually and functionally consistent Navigability is clear, simple and user friendly Spelling and grammar are consistent and accurate

3 3 E. Universal accessibility To comply with this guideline, the course design should demonstrate a conscious effort to minimally comply with Level 1 of Accessibility standards: A text equivalent for every non-text element is provided (e.g. alternative text tags are used in all images, transcripts or close captioning for video, etc.) Captioning is available for audio portions of multimedia presentations. When a page requires that an applet, plug-in, or other application be present on the client system, the page provides a link to the needed plug-in or applet Row and column headers are identified in data tables Use of color does not disadvantage those with color blindness Category 3: Instructional Design and Delivery A. Course design promotes interaction and collaboration Students are encouraged to introduce themselves and/or create a profile in Blackboard or Moodle Students are encouraged to respond to classmate interactions Instructor introduces himself/herself Expectations for synchronous and asynchronous activities are clearly stated B. Activities enhance student learning Activities are connected to learning objectives Activities address multiple learning preferences Reading and writing requirements are consistent with student abilities and course Activities lead to learning desired concepts Instructional material may be reviewed repeatedly (built-in redundancy) Summaries provided frequently, particularly at the end of topics or modules Activities develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills Category 4: Assessment and Evaluation of Student Learning A. Course has activities to assess student readiness for course content and mode of delivery All assessment criteria are available to the student Acceptable methods for completing assignments are identified (group work, open book, etc.) B. Assessment activities are aligned with learning objectives Learning objectives are listed or referenced in main assessments Criteria to evaluate participation in online discussion are made available Study questions or sample questions are provided for main evaluations Samples of assignments are provided

4 4 C. Multiple assessment strategies are used to measure content knowledge, attitudes, and skills When possible, options among assignments are provided to allow for different interests, backgrounds, and learning preferences Students are not assessed solely on tests/quizzes but are provided ample opportunity to demonstrate proficiency in different ways (e.g., projects, problem sets, contributions and responses to online discussions, completion of online assignments, portfolio submissions, special projects and/or presentations, creation of authentic products, etc.) D. Opportunities for students to receive feedback about their own performance are provided Self-grading assignments are released immediately A general feedback mechanism is implemented (e.g., through an announcement tool) All assignments have due dates Rubrics for all assignments identify assessment guidelines E. Self assessments and peer feedback Self-tests are similar to the final evaluation instruments Course includes a tool /section to allow students pose discussion questions and respond to others discussion topics Formal (graded) or informal peer-review opportunities are provided Category 5: Appropriate and Effective Use of Technology A. Appropriate tools to facilitate communication and interaction Course uses technology tools to facilitate spontaneous synchronous communication (e.g., chat, videoconferencing, instant messaging, etc.) Course uses technology tools to facilitate asynchronous interactions (e.g., discussion boards, , wikis, etc.) B. Multimedia elements and/or learning objects are used to enhance learning. Tutorials include screen captures and voice over Multimedia elements (e.g., audio, video, etc.) are made available in multiple ways (e.g., through a subscription format) PowerPoint presentations are narrated and transcribed All multimedia elements have an explicit connection to course goals or objectives Multimedia elements are compatible with multiple operating systems and require only a standard, free plug-in

5 5 Category 6: Student Feedback A. Course content Students are given opportunities to give feedback on course content B. Technology Course contains a mechanism to solicit student feedback on how delivery can be more effective for student learning (e.g., through a Discussion Topic for Feedback) References Ruhe, V., & Zumbo, B. D. (2009). Evaluation in Distance Education and E-learning: The Unfolding Model. New York: NY, Guilford Press. Rubric for Online Instruction. California State University, Chico: CA. Revised Guide to Online High School Courses. ( ). National Education Association. Retrieved April 06, 2011 from Guide to Teaching Online Courses. ( ). National Education Association. Retrieved April 06, 2011 from EduTools. (2011). OCEP: OCEP Home Page. Retrieved April 06, 2011 from Illinois Online Network. Quality Online Course Initiative Rubric. Retrieved April 06, 2011 from

6 6 Appendix 3: Assignment of Copyrights ASSIGNMENT OF COPYRIGHTS for University Sponsored Educational Course Materials This Assignment of Copyrights is effective on the day this document is signed by FirstName LastName (hereafter referred to as "Assignor") and involves an assignment of University Sponsored Educational Course Materials to Iowa State University of Science and Technology, an institution of higher education organized under the laws of the State of Iowa (hereafter referred to as "ISU"). WHEREAS, Assignor has developed a department level course or other educational course material titled, Course 101, more fully described as Course title here (hereafter "the Work") and is, under ISU University Sponsored Educational Materials Policy, the Copyright Owner of this Work; and WHEREAS, the Work was developed pursuant to the Online Course Development Grant Program of the which provides substantial University sponsorship to the Assignor for the Development of the Work; and WHEREAS, when educational materials are developed with substantial University sponsorship, the author is expected to assign the copyright in the Work to the university; and WHEREAS, the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences at ISU desires to use the Work internally to provide instruction to students at the university as part of the distance education curriculum of the College by way of videotape, World Wide Web (Internet), CD ROM, Streaming Technology, digital formats and/or other technologies that are known or will become available to provide distance learning opportunities; and

7 7 WHEREAS, the parties desire that the Assignor's rights in the Work be transferred to ISU for the purposes of developing distance learning opportunities for the Work. NOW, THEREFORE, in consideration of the mutual promises and covenants contained herein, it is agreed as follows: 1. Assignment. Assignor hereby assigns to ISU, its successors and assigns, all right, title and interest in the Work, including all copyrights, and including the right to reproduce, display, edit, modify, distribute and transmit the Work, and to create derivative works based on the Work. This Assignment is a worldwide assignment and not limited to any particular geographic area. ISU, in its sole discretion, will decide whether to register copyright for the Work in its own name and at its own expense. 2. Use. This Assignment includes the right for ISU to use the Work within ISU and for use with other distance learning opportunities. Assignor agrees that ISU may assign the responsibility to another person or persons to teach the Work for ISU if he or she does not desire to continue teaching the Work. Assignor agrees that if he or she does not desire to continue updating the content of the Work, ISU has the right to assign the responsibility to another person or persons to revise and update the materials included in the Work. The Assignor may at any time request, in writing, that ISU remove the Assignor's name from the Work. 3. Preexisting Materials. ISU acknowledges that the Work contains the preexisting materials, such as oral lectures, notes, lessons planned, photographs, drawings, graphs, and other images and the like that are created and are owned by Assignor and that Assignor has used the Work for instructional purposes in department classes previously conducted by the Assignor. Assignor shall retain ownership of all rights, including any copyrights, in the preexisting materials, and ISU shall obtain no rights in such preexisting materials other than the rights granted herein in connection with the Work. Notwithstanding the foregoing, nothing contained herein shall restrict ISU's right to edit, modify or create derivative works of the Work, including the preexisting materials embodied therein. 4. Author Rights. ISU grants to the Assignor, as the author of the Work, the following additional rights associated with the Assignor's use of the Work: a. The right to make copies of all or part of the Work for teaching or research purposes;

8 8 b. The right to create derivative works from all or part of the Work; c. The right to include all or part of the Work in a research thesis or dissertation; d. The right to make oral presentation of all or part of the Work and to include a summary and/or highlights of the Work in papers distributed at such presentations or in conference proceedings; e. The right to use all or part of the Work without modification in personal compilations or publications of the author's own works; f. The right to include all or part of the Work on the author's own personal website; g. The right to include all or part of the Work on websites owned by ISU; h. The right to include all or part of the Work on third party websites including electronic print servers or electronic reserves of libraries. i. Upon written permission from ISU, the right to teach the Work at another institution of higher education external to ISU. 5. Compensation. The Work was developed as part of an Online Course Development Grant in the amount of $8,000, no additional compensation beyond that amount will be provided to the Assignor for the development of the Work. In the event that the work is commercialized by ISU through royalties, rental or sale of the work, the first receipts shall be divided 75% to ISU and 25% to the Assignor until the full amount of the Online Course Development Grant has been reimbursed to ISU. After full reimbursement, any additional receipts shall be divided 50% to ISU and 50% to the Assignor. 6. Assignor's Warranties. Assignor warrants that, to the best of Assignor s knowledge, the Work is original except for third party materials identified to ISU and does not infringe any copyrights or any other rights of any third party, and that all permissions for ISU to exercise the rights granted herein have been, or will be, obtained from third parties as required by law. Any obligations associated with obtaining necessary permissions will be the joint responsibility of the ISU College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and the Assignor. Assignor warrants that he is the sole and exclusive lawful owner of the Work, and that he has not assigned any rights in the Work to any other party, that the Work is free and clear from any encumbrances, liens, etc., and free from any and all claims of any persons, firms or corporations whatsoever except as have been identified to ISU. 7. General Provisions. (a) In the event any provision of this Assignment shall be deemed to be invalid or void under any applicable law, the remaining provisions shall not be affected thereby and shall continue in full force and effect.

9 9 (b) This Assignment shall be governed in accordance with the laws of the State of Iowa and of the United States of America. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have executed this instrument on the day of signature as indicated below. ASSIGNOR Name: (Date) Title: Address: Phone: E mail: IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY College of Liberal Arts & Sciences By: Name: Julio C Rodriguez Director of Curriculum Development, LAS CDOL (Date) Address: Phone: E mail: DEPARTMENT OF By: Name: (Date) Department Chair Address: Phone: E mail:

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