By Christine Voelker, K-12 Program Director for Quality Matters
Whether at the school or district level, there are so many ways you can help make a difference in the quality of online and blended learning for students. In fact, we’ve got ten of them for you!
Become a QM Course Reviewer
It’s a great way to use your expertise to help others. You’ll get to see other people’s courses, and learn so much from it and your course review team. We are always looking for more people to help with this effort and, as a bonus, you’ll earn a little cash to top it all off!
Help build a community
We’d like to make it easier for you to connect with others doing similar work. Consider attending this year’s QM Connect Conference which takes place September 24-27 in Fort Worth, TX! It’s a great way to connect with others who speak the QM language. You could also have a voice in shaping our QM K-12 community group. Fill out this quick form and tell us what you’d like to see.
Showcase the work you are doing
Consider presenting the good work you are doing locally or at the QM Connect Conference. If you are doing a presentation and mentioning QM, let us know and we will help you promote your session! Every month we offer QM Success Stories webinars, where you can hear about other schools and districts who are implementing QM — check them out and let us know if you are willing to share your own success story.
Have a course reviewed
Submitting a course for an official course review is a great way to continuously improve. Submit one and use it for benchmarking purposes, or submit your whole catalog. QM’s Certified K-12 Course Reviewers are ready to provide you with valuable feedback — get validation about what you are doing well, in addition to actionable ideas for improvement.
Leverage the power of your Certification Marks
Once your course meets QM Standards in an Official Review, your course can carry the Certification Mark. Use it to promote your quality courses to your community. When students, parents, and teachers see the mark, they’ll know they are getting a well-designed course.
Join the QM IDA
The QM IDA is a Special Interest Group (SIG) for QM members, which not only serves to provide low or no cost professional development opportunities, but also to promote collaboration and mentorship between instructional design professionals who are focused on quality standards based practice informed by research. It is a great way to share information and resources on a national scale.
Obtain QM’s NEW Teaching Online Certificate
Aligned with the QM Online Instructor Skills Set, this set of seven robust workshops will help you hone and showcase your online teaching skills. Take them all, or pick and choose the ones that will help you with the skills you need most. Successful completion of each workshop results in a digital credential you can use to prove you know your stuff! Finish all seven, and we’ll issue you the granddaddy of all digital credentials, the Teaching Online Certificate.
See how your courses stack up against the new Rubrics
So far, we’ve gotten great feedback on the 4th editions of the K-12 Secondary and K-12 Publisher Rubrics! If you haven’t had a chance to see the updates, a great way to quickly get the run down is to take the Rubric Update. The newest editions are also available through the Self-Review Tool, which will allow you to see how your course or courses measure up, yourself!
Share the love and speak a common language
We want to help you build capacity for continuous improvement. Hook up with another local district as a consortium and we’ll discount your membership fees.
Ask your course provider if their courses are QM-Certified!
Using third-party courses? Make sure that you ask if their courses are QM-Certified. If they aren’t you can give them a gentle nudge in our direction. Working in tandem with you, our course reviewers, and the vendor, we’ll make sure those courses are the quality you need. If their courses are, ask to see the final report!
Christine Voelker is a 20-year education veteran who spent many years teaching research skills and integrating instructional technology before entering the world of online learning. She has an advanced certificate in Administration and Supervision and a Master's in Library and Information Science.
Connect with Christine on Twitter: @voelkerc.