Courses undergoing review are due 6 weeks before the start of instruction.
What is a course review and why is it important?
This guide is intended to share how to review online courses using a model designed by Quality Matters (QM) and based on the National Standards for Quality Online Courses. The online course review process detailed here draws from nationally-recognized best practices, national online learning standards, and the Citadel’s substantial experience with reviewing online courses and online educational content. The set of standards for quality has been a benchmark for online learning for more than a decade.
The purpose of the Citadel Online Course Review process is to provide a framework for preparing online courses to meet quality standards. The process is grounded in guidelines and recommendations that promote student learning and teaching effectiveness. Course standards are linked to commonly accepted principles of good practice. As such, the process addresses issues of learner support, assessment, interaction, technical support, and ADA compliance. This is a faculty-centered process that respects academic freedom, promotes the quality of online courses, and encourages the continual improvement of existing online offerings.
The development of an online course is not a simple task; sometimes the process takes as long as three to six months to complete. A review of the design of all new online courses will be conducted at least one semester prior to when they are scheduled to be offered (DLP I.C.).
All courses taught online require a mandatory course review unless the course has been awarded the designation of Fully Approved through the Online Course Review Process (see below). This includes courses with multiple instructors and co-teachers. If an instructor submits a Fully Approved course taught by a different instructor and does not change any content, the instructor may request an Expedited Review. If an instructor fails to submit their online course for review the instructor will not be allowed to move forward with teaching the course online.
The review assesses evidence of compliance with The Citadel’s Credit Hour Policy and internal standards (based on QM Standards). Once submitted, online courses are categorized into one of the three categories as outlined below:
- In progress: The course has been submitted and is waiting for review.
- Conditional: The course has been reviewed but has standards that were rated as Developing. The faculty member will need to revise standards that are rated as Developing and resubmit for full approval prior to teaching the course online again. Conditional approvals expire after 1 year. After that time, faculty are required to complete a full new submission.
- Fully Approved: The course has been reviewed and all standards have been rated as Met. The course is approved for 5 years from the semester of review unless significant changes are made.
CEITL&DE has created a checklist for instructors to guide you through the online course review process. The checklist has been adapted from the Quality Matters Higher Education Rubric which is an internationally recognized evidence-based set of standards for online courses.
Please reach out to our office if you need any help during the online course review process. We are here to help!