Tag Archives: Quality Matters

Q & A: SJC Standard Course Syllabus

Have you ever wondered why San Jacinto College creates a standard syllabus for each of its courses to be used by the faculty? We asked Dr. Catherine O’Brien, Associate Vice Chancellor for Learning, to help answer that question.

“Legislation requires all colleges to post the course syllabus online for students.  San Jacinto developed a single, district-wide syllabus template and a process whereby changes made in a single location can be pushed out in multiple formats.  That means that the course syllabus in SOS, as well as on the college website, reflects the most recent curriculum revisions.  The beauty of the system is that it also allows us to make a single revision to the honesty statement, emergency notification, the disability statement and other pertinent information, and it will be reflected in the next version of the course syllabus.   Each time a course section is created for fall, spring or summer, a new syllabus is simultaneously developed.  To this end, it is important for faculty to check their courses in SOS prior to each semester.”

Detailed instructions on the process is available via this link: Accessing Your Course Syllabus in SOS.

These instructions are also available within the basic template provided for each course in Blackboard. For additional assistance, contact your campus Instructional Designer.


New Blackboard Template Released in Spring 2014 Course Shells

We are pleased to announce the course site shells for the Spring 2014 semester (201420) are now available in Blackboard.

As part of this release, included in the 201420 course sites is an updated template with content to help meet the minimum course presence expectations and Quality Matter (QM) standards. The infographic below details features in this new template. You can download a PDF copy of this infographic: Understanding Bb Course Template.

Bb Course Template

Support staff and resources are available to help faculty in course design, with Bb training, or in meeting the QM standards.

Contact information for Instructional Designers, Blackboard Support and Multimedia Specialists can be found via the People Page of the EdTech blog at http://www.sanjac.edu/edtech .

What is Quality Matters?

Quality Matters (QM) is a peer review process for online and hybrid courses that is faculty-centered and faculty-driven. San Jacinto College is currently developing a pilot program for QM based on a recommendation of the eLearning Task Force. This program will be supported in a joint effort by The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) and the Distance Learning Office (DL). This effort will be led by Dr. Sherrin Frances of the Central campus English department.

During the August 20, 2009 Distance Learning Faculty Meeting Dr. Frances gave a presentation to talk about QM. She explained she had learned about QM at the eLearning Conference in Portland, OR earlier this year. Since that time she has taken the message of QM to heart and has been evaluating and updated her own online courses. She feels that the QM process “defines clear ideas for building a better course for students to navigate.”

The pilot program will run during the 2009-2010 academic year. During September a team will be assembled of two faculty members from each campus. Dr. Frances hopes to have a variety of disciplines represented on the team. Training on the QM rubric will take place during the fall with practice critiques of courses. In the spring the pilot will be expanded to review additional courses. The process will be evaluated by the group and next steps will be recommended at the end of the spring semester.

If you are interested in learning more about QM you can find details at their website at www.qualitymatters.org you can also email Dr. Frances with questions or to volunteer at sherrin.frances@sjcd.edu.