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Quality Criteria

These criteria can serve a dual function of helping you follow a sound design process and enabling quality checks at different points in the process.


Quality Assurance Strategies

Decisions taken at the course level about the learning outcomes, the learning and teaching strategies, the assessment methods, and the delivery modes influence the selection and/or development of the learning materials. A comprehensive quality assurance framework that clearly spells out the criteria for each of the course components provides direction for the design, development, delivery and ongoing review of the learning materials. A comprehensive quality assurance strategy informs and guides the establishment and ongoing review of systems, processes and procedures that promote and support the development of quality courses.       


  • This COL quality assurance framework in the 2009 Quality Assurance Toolkit includes Criterion 6, which focuses on course design and materials development (2.55MB, 371 pages).
  • Link to Tony Bates' blog, Nine Steps to Quality Online Learning, Step 9: Evaluate and innovate. The nine steps are aimed mainly at educators who are new to online learning, or have tried online learning without much help or success.


Design Review Questions

Use these questions to reflect on the overall quality of your course:

  • Review the national or other quality standards for the level of the course. How does the course rate against the standards?
  • Review the course map. What are the appropriate pedagogies or teaching strategies to accompany the different elements e.g. lecture, group work, portfolio?
  • How do the learning activities align to the purpose and outcomes of the module/course?
  • How do the learning activities sufficiently engage and enable learners to acquire the stated competences and achieve the learning outcomes?
  • How have you integrated sufficient supportive and meaningful feedback into the course? How soon is the feedback available?
  • How easily navigable is the course?