Initiatives DLQI page overview v2.0

The Distance Learning Quality Initiative

The Distance Learning Quality Initiative (DLQi) is supported by an interdisciplinary team from 2019-2021 under the leadership of Prof. Ralucca Gera, Scott Bischoff, and Tom Rosko, Directors of the Teaching and Learning Commons (TLC).

The Distance Learning Quality Initiative (DLQI) is a two-year TLC campus-wide initiative initiated during AY 20. The first year emphasizes quality standards at the course level. The second year introduces quality standards at the curriculum level to promote continuity and more cohesive learning experiences across the curriculum. DLQI introduces and incorporates quality standards and best practices for teaching and learning in distance learning courses and the virtual classroom. In pursuit of this goal, research was conducted to identify quality standards, best practices, and specific tools and techniques to incorporate training and support resources and training developed for distance learning faculty at NPS. The DLQI initiative is coordinated and led by the Graduate Education Advancement Center (GEAC) Office of Teaching and Learning (OTL) and supported by GEAC's team of skilled instructional designers, graphic, and media developers.

Distance Learning Quality Guidelines

GEAC first surveyed exemplary practices used at leading educational institutions worldwide to develop guidelines for developing and teaching online courses. Our goal was to provide guidelines comprehensive enough to include the features that most contribute to student success, but flexible enough to accommodate a wide variety of learner needs, program goals, and teaching styles at NPS. Consistent with the research, NPS identified the following categories of quality standards for distance learning:

  • Course Preparation
  • Content Organization
  • Learning Outcomes & Assessment
  • Student Engagement
  • Course Site Design & Navigation
  • Technology for Teaching & Learning
  • Media
  • Accessibility

The Distance Learning Quality Guide (pdf) details specific guidelines in each category. Each section also notes applicable NPS policies, accreditation standards, and legal requirements, and provides references for further detail and supporting research. The Guide includes a Checklist (pdf) designed as a quick reference tool for developing and reviewing distance courses.

Using the Guidelines

It is important to keep in mind that the guidelines are just that—guidelines. They are not intended to require the same tools, approach, design, or look and feel for all distance courses at NPS. Instead, they outline goals and objectives for quality distance learning that all NPS programs are encouraged to achieve in their own way.

GEAC is Here to Help

Faculty can receive assistance and suggestions to develop, design, and integrate educational technology to enhance teaching and to provide quality distance learning courses:

  • Strategic Course Development & Alignment, Consultation and Instructional Coaching, Cohesive Teaching, Learning, and Assessment Practices—Ali Rodgers, Director Faculty Development & Office of Teaching and Learning:
  • Course Design & Delivery—LMS and Sakai management, use of educational technologies, instructional graphic & media development to support learning and instruction—GEAC Instructional Design: Contact us

Points of Contact:

Dennis "Denny" Lester, Ph.D.
Graduate Education Advancement Center Director 

Ali Rodgers
Faculty Development & Office of Teaching and Learning

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DLQI Sidebar Quicklinks v2.0

Download DLQI Handbook

Guide to providing engaging, effective, and student-friendly distance learning experiences.
(Download DLQI Handbook PDF)

Download DLQI Checklist

Checklist to help NPS faculty, staff, and administrators set and achieve goals for quality course design.
(Download Checklist PDF)