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Partnership Launches to Offer QM's National Standard for Quality Assurance

Quality Matters and iDesign team up to offer the QM Certification Mark for instructional design and help universities scale high-quality online learning

DALLAS, April 14, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Pioneering instructional design firm iDesign today announced the creation of a quality assurance pathway for online course development in partnership with Quality Matters (QM), an international membership organization of more than 1,200 institutions dedicated to supporting quality assurance in online learning.

Through a unique collaboration, courses exclusively designed by iDesign learning experience designers will be reviewed and certified using the rigorous Quality Matters review process. QM Certification — along with the QM professional development received by iDesign staff — will signal to universities, faculty, and students that these courses were designed in accordance with research-supported and nationally-recognized standards of quality.

"At a time when institutions are facing an unprecedented shift to remote learning and the online modality, engaging with professional development and robust review processes for online course development has never been more important for students and more essential for educators," said Dr. Deborah Adair, executive director of Quality Matters. "This work is about integrating continuous improvement directly into the instructional design process, enabling more institutions to scale online programs while promoting quality and accessibility."

As record numbers of students are participating in courses remotely due to campus closures in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the collaboration underscores QM's framework as an industry-wide quality standard for online education. iDesign will become the first, exclusive provider of instructional design services that includes an official Quality Matters review and certification as part of its design and continuous improvement process. Institutions that partner with iDesign may earn the Quality Matters certification on courses regardless of whether or not they are a QM member institution.

"The field of instructional design continues to rapidly grow, and we're seeing unprecedented demand as institutions focus on building their capacity for developing online programs," said Whitney Kilgore, chief academic officer at iDesign.  "This partnership highlights our commitment to quality as we embed a rigorous process of quality assurance and continuous improvement within instructional design."

Recently, Quality Matters released the fourth edition of its annual "Changing Landscape of Online Education" report, which provides a research-focused analysis of online learning.  The CHLOE project shines a light on the strategic and operational side of online learning, helping leaders and practitioners better understand trends and developments.

About Quality Matters:  Grounded in research. Driven by best practices. A community that puts learners first. Quality Matters (QM) is the global organization leading quality assurance in online and innovative digital teaching and learning environments. It provides a scalable quality assurance system for online and blended learning used within and across organizations. When you see QM Certification Marks on courses or programs, it means they have met QM Course Design Standards or QM Program Review Criteria in a rigorous review process.

About iDesign:

iDesign partners with colleges and universities to build, grow and support online and blended programs. We are passionate about helping faculty harness the potential of emerging technologies to design courses and degrees that make an impact, whether they are fully online, flipped, blended, adaptive, or competency-based. Our unbundled, fee-for-service model is rooted in a commitment to flexibility and institutional autonomy, while our analytics platform supports continuous improvement through rigorous measurement of student engagement and course quality. From statewide university systems to private colleges, our custom solutions pair instructional design with technologies to enable great teaching. To learn more, please visit