Quality Matters certification awarded to Lib 160 course


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Iowa State’s information literacy course, lib 160, received a Quality Matters Certification for its outstanding quality and structure.

Iowa State’s LIB (Library) 160 course has received the Quality Matters Certification for its excellence and high-quality structure.

LIB 160 is Iowa State’s only library course and is a graduation requirement for all students. After its remodel in January 2022, the course was submitted for review and nomination for the Quality Matters Certificate.

“How can we design courses both in online and blended environments in a way that are navigable and user-friendly?” said Leysa Hassall, instructional technologist and coordinator for Quality Matters.

Hassall said Quality Matters is a non-profit organization concerned with the quality of online and blended courses. She emphasized the importance of increasing interactivity in online courses and connectivity with ISU students.

“With the class being fully online and a half semester, the interactive and authentic research exercises in our quizzes and textbook are important,” said Rano Marupova, lead designer and course instructor for LIB 160.

After being submitted for review, the organization has a procedure for reviewing the quality of an online course’s design, flow and structure.

“One thing we got really good feedback on from the reviewers was the course design and organization,” Marupova said.“One thing we applied based on the comments was clarifying some parts of the course on Canvas, and one of the suggestions we received was adding more interactivity to the class.”

Quality Matters uses a rubric designed specifically for online and blended learning courses and, using this collection of standards, evaluates the quality of the course. The goal for the course reform in January and from the feedback of the Quality Matters evaluation was more interactivity and creating new connections and interactions with students.

“Quality Matters is this organization that came up with a measurement instrument called course design standards,” Hassall said. “The standards are research-based.”

Using a book that was put together by the course’s instructors and curriculum group, both Marupova and Hassall said the course has a solid design and is easy to navigate. The textbook has quite a few interactivities, in which students do not simply read the material but they can also collaborate while learning.