Here’s a blog post from guest blogger Tom Clark, PhD, TA Consulting:
The iNACOL Research Agenda Survey talked about what’s working, what the field is struggling with, and the gaps we see in knowledge in the field. I would argue that a focus on addressing the gaps in educational quality research is paramount.
Evidence-based quality standards for K-12 online and blended learning cannot be developed until such evidence is in place — as it is, at least in part — in higher education, where Quality Matters (quality matters.org) has created evidence-based standards grounded in “what works” in published educational research.
This grounding has facilitated development of what Quality Matters has characterized as a nationally recognized certification process that provides third party validation of the quality of courses and online components at over 700 participating colleges and universities.
Therefore, my questions are:
1) How can schools and programs in the field collaborate actively with educational researchers to help build the evidence base for what works in K-12 online and blended learning?
2) If sufficient evidence-based research is available, is it be feasible (and appropriate) to create a national quality process in K-12 online and blended learning similar to the postsecondary QM process?
If you have questions or comments for Tom, please list them below.