QM Certification Pathway

The QM Certification Pathway is a professional development pathway in which faculty apply all of the Quality Matters Rubric standards to one of their current online or blended courses. This pathway includes an external Quality Matters review and results in official QM Certification for the course.

The QM Certification Pathway is for faculty who:

  • currently teach an online or blended course
  • demonstrate strong knowledge of online course design and pedagogy
  • are ready to apply the Quality Matters Higher Education rubric to make improvements to an online course
  • are seeking Quality Matters certification for an online/blended course

What are the requirements?

Applying the Quality Matters Rubric Workshop

This foundational workshop focused on research-based course design standards serves as the prerequisite step for faculty and instructional support staff engaging with Quality Matters at NC State.  QM’s flagship workshop on the QM Rubric and its use in reviewing the design of online and blended courses is intended for a broad audience, including but not limited to faculty, instructional designers, administrators, and adjunct instructors. It is particularly helpful to those new to QM or those considering the adoption of a quality assurance process for online and blended learning. In addition to learning about the QM Rubric and the course review process, participants will learn to apply the concept of alignment and draft helpful recommendations for course improvement.

The APPQMR workshop is the starting point for the QM Certification Pathway. It is offered every fall and spring semester both online asynchronous and face-to-face (or online synchronous) by a certified facilitator from DELTA.  

  • Prerequisite: Experience teaching or course development for online and blended courses
  • Workshop Delivery: F2F (or online synchronous) or Online asynchronous
  • Workshop Length: 8 hours (f2f) or 2 weeks (online)

You can register for APPQMR by clicking one of the buttons below.

If there are no sessions currently available for registration, click on “Add to watchlist” to be notified of upcoming sessions.

Register for APPQMR Face-to-Face workshop Register for APPQMR Online workshop


Online Course Improvement Program (OCIP)

What is the Online Course Improvement Program?

The Online Course Improvement Program (OCIP) is a professional development opportunity for faculty who currently teach online and are seeking to build upon their existing knowledge and skills in pursuit of improving one of their online courses. The program model is collaborative, which includes a cohort (group) of faculty peers and OCIP coordinators working together to design a course that meets the nationally-recognized standards of the Quality Matters organization.

Who should participate?

Full-time faculty currently teaching an online or blended course. (There is a 5-person maximum for the program.) Each participating faculty will choose one specific course to work on.

What course is eligible?

Any online or blended for-credit NC State course for which the faculty is the instructor of record and has taught online at least twice.

Program Objectives

  1. Apply research-based course design strategies to an existing online, for-credit course at NC State.
  2. Improve an existing course based on the Quality Matters standards which include:
    • Course Overview and Introduction
    • Learning Objectives
    • Assessment and Measurement
    • Instructional Materials
    • Course Activities and Learner Interaction
    • Course Technology
    • Learner Support
    • Accessibility and Usability
  3. Conduct an informal course review of an online course according to QM Sixth Edition 2018 Rubric.
  4. Prepare for an official QM course review of an improved online course.
  5. Evaluate the Online Course Improvement Program’s impact on online course design.


All participants are required to successfully complete the Applying the Quality Matters Rubric (APPQMR) workshop to participate in OCIP.

Program length and delivery

OCIP is a 16-week program that will be delivered in a blended format. The total commitment of time expected for the program will be at least 60 hours. This includes attending face-to-face meetings, participating in online discussions, and designing and applying improvements to online courses with feedback.

Participants will be expected to devote approximately an hour a week to the online portion of the course within Moodle. It will be self-paced with multiple opportunities for interaction, including an online learning community.

There are eight scheduled cohort meetings for a two-hour duration. Participants are required to attend at least seven meetings. These meetings will be used for peer feedback on course improvements, workshopping, and roundtable discussions on current research and trends in online learning.

Participants will meet individually with a “course mentor” in DELTA for one hour every other week to review progress and work through improvement challenges. Meetings may be via video conference or face-to-face.

Participants are expected to perform an internal review of another cohort member’s course. In turn, participants also will have their own course internally reviewed by a member of the cohort prior to submission for an official QM review. The feedback from internal reviews will contribute to the improvement of your online course.

Participants will need to set aside time (minimum 25 hours) over the course of several weeks to make improvements to their courses. This time will be dedicated to applying the best practices covered in the online training portion as well as feedback from peers and coordinators. Participants will be expected to submit their newly-redesigned online course for an internal course review. Participants will make improvements based on the internal review prior to formal submission to Quality Matters.

View application information for OCIP


Official QM-managed Review of Course

During a QM-Managed Official Course Review, faculty can get outside validation — from an independent third party — of the quality work that has been done in online course design. Faculty receive useful recommendations from the review team that will help you to improve the course.

Quality Matters Course Certification

A course can become QM-Certified once it meets QM Rubric Standards at the 85% threshold or better and meets all essential standards during a QM-Managed Official Course Review. The Course Quality Team will provide the faculty with a letter certifying the course for QM Certification which includes: a certification of completion and a QM Certification mark to display in their course or program website. A copy of this letter will be forwarded to the department chair and college dean for their files.

View Quality Matters Certified courses at NC State