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iNACOL Revs National Standards Guide for Online Learning

A new report released today by the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) outlines new standards for online learning courses in K-12. The report, National Standards for Quality Online Courses, Version 2, was formulated by a committee of experts to give K-12 schools, districts, and organizations a common benchmark for evaluating and implementing courses for their online programs.

"By offering up a set of guidelines to promote quality online courses, it is our hope that all students engaged in online and blended learning programs will be given the opportunity to access a world-class education," said Susan Patrick, contributor to the report and president of iNACOL, in a prepared statement.

The new national standards--based in part on the original standards, plus results from research and surveys--focus on aligning online course content to state academic standards, instructional design, technology, student assessment and course management. The goal, Patrick said, is to ensure that each course supports the academic growth and critical learning experience of K-12 students in online and blended learning environments.

Since the release of the original standards in 2007, other organizations have implemented these guidelines to develop, review, and improve online courses. In this 2011 version, the committee added reviewer considerations for each indicator, plus a rubric to assist in the review of the online courses. The rubric was developed by the Texas Education Agency's Texas Virtual School Network (TxVSN).

The report, National Standards for Quality Online Courses, Version 2, can be accessed freely at the iNACOL Web site.

About the Author

Kanoe Namahoe is online editor for 1105 Media's Education Group. She can be reached at knamahoe@1105media.com.

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