Institutions Considering the Creating of eLearning Consortia, and
Quality Assurance Agencies Providing Assistance to Such Consortia
Consortia Reporting Minnesota Online BCcampus EUC of South Dakota Washington Online Big 12 Engineering Consortium eCampusAlberta North Dakota University System Online Iowa Community College Online Consortium National Universities Degree Consortium Oregon Community College Distance Learning Association Colorado Community Colleges Online University of Texas TeleCampus
1. Creation of An E-Learning Consortium
Results in commitments from all constituencies,
Documents its legal and contractual structure, and
Inevitably drives change in participating institutions.
Responses: Creation of an e-Learning Consortium
17% of the consortia involved workforce representatives in the discussions,
58% have a legal and/or contractual structure,
33% have by-laws that clearly outline leadership,
66% make official records available for public review,
75% have a memorandum of understanding defining financial arrangements, student records, and determination of academic quality,
25% have provisions for adding and/or dropping institutions,
42% have a binding process for the resolution of differences,
75% have a periodic review of basic governance and administrative structure,
83% indicate changes in the delivery of education and services as a result of participating in the consortium, and
17% indicate there has been a sharing of self-evaluation benchmarking with similar consortia.
2. Mission of the Consortium
Is widely understood and accepted and
Enables public accountability.
Responses: Mission of the Consortium “…essentially a service agency that initiates or supports systemic programs and infrastructure…” “…an advocate and work to inspire the adoption of best practices for curricula development…” “…promotes accountability by providing a forum for the institutional representatives to share strategies and ideas…” “…single point of contact for distance education opportunities…create collaborations…deliver programs and courses…and address accountability issues for eLearning.”
3. Responsibilities of theConsortium
Sets clear standards,
Exercises responsibility for the quality of the education,
Strives to provide a transparent environment,
Engages in planning processes, and
Supports professional development and scholarly activity.
Responses: Responsibilities of the Consortium
25% issue performance reports to the participating institutions,
25% assure that its programs and services are evaluated and improved,
50% can identify courses/services that fail to meet standards and require remediation,
25% have the authority to withdraw inadequate courses or terminate inadequate services,
0% have a single point of contact for information, registration, etc.,
75% of the consortiums assist in financial aid agreements allowing students to take courses from multiple institutions, and
100% of the consortium inform members of student complaints it receives related to courses and services.
4. Responsibilities to Participating Institutions
The consortium facilitates access to programming provided by its member institutions,
The consortium assumes responsibility for developing policies, and
The consortium cooperates with its member institutions to develop the processes and systems necessary to accomplish its stated mission and goals.
Responses: Responsibilities to Participating Institutions “…programming is available as transfer credit to any institution…” “…institutional membership is to those that are essentially peers…” “…individual institutions are responsible for their programs and course offerings…” “Content created by the instructors is the property of the instructor and shared at the instructor’s discretion.” “…institutions…shall support faculty development strategies and training necessary…to prepare faculty to teach distance education courses.”
5. Responsibilities to Students
Facilitates student success,
Ensures that tools and services are complementary, and
Supports portal related efforts.
Responses: Responsibilities to Students “…serves as a coordinating and connecting entity for the campuses…” “…act as conduit between institutions and students looking for information in a systemic context.” “…partner schools have agreed to a set of principles, policies, and processes…” “…are in the beginning stages of reviewing student support services via online…” “…consortium model is a service infrastructure that does not interfere with business rules of the institutions we serve.” “…one application (financial aid)…one admissions application but can take courses from any university without reapplying…”
So, What Can We Do with This? The Good Practices in E-Learning Consortia:
Is meant to be applicable to a variety of eLearning consortia;
Is meant to assist people in thinking through a broad range of issues related to such consortium; and
Is meant to highlight many of the changes of academic culture as well as management practice that healthy eLearning consortia often require.