Scholarly Research

Scholarly Research in Online Learning

Assessing Quality: Design, Content, Engagement

  • Students could be asked what features specifically supported and detracted from their learning and how they would design the learning object to be more effective.
  • Students who like a subject may be more open to new ways of learning concepts.
  • learning object used exclusively as a motivational or demonstration tool, might not have as much an effect as a learning object used to teach a new concept.

Kay, R. H., & Knaack, L. (2009). Assessing learning, quality and engagement in learning objects: The learning object evaluation scale for students (LOES-S).Educational Technology, Research and Development, 57(2), 147-168. Retrieved from

Assessing Quality: Teaching and Faculty Development

Here are five strategies utilized by The American Public University System (APUS) to “promote a culture of assessment, continuous improvement, and data-based decision making.” (Shattuck 2014) 

Shattuck, K. (2014). Assuring quality in online education: practices and processes at the teaching, resource, and program levels. Sterling,, VA: Stylus.

Strategy #1: Develop a Program Review Committee 

  • Implement a program review process
  • Compare the program to similar programs at other institutions
  • solicit input from outside stakeholders

Strategy #2: Document Student Learning Outcomes

  • Average class size
  • Standardized testing
  • Book Costs

Strategy #3: Inform Stakeholders About Student Learning Outcomes

  • Transparency by Design project (TbD)
  • College Choices for Adults
  • Principles of Good Practice for Higher Education Institutions Serving Adults at a Distance

Strategy #4: Establish a Reciprocal Relationship Among Stakeholders and the Institution for the Sharing of Data

  • Community of Inquiry (Col)
  • Educational Testing Service (ETS)
  • National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)

Strategy #5: Incorporate Assessment Data Into Daily Decision-Making Processes

  • Consider constituent feedback
  • Respond to student feedback
  • Provide the public with evidence of student success