Online Education and Microcredential Council

The OEMC’s responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

a) review curricular proposals involving online and hybrid offerings;

b) review microcredential proposals;

c) review current policies and practices regarding distance delivered education and microcredentials, and make recommendations for new policies and practices, where appropriate, in collaboration with appropriate committees (e.g., GC Curriculum and Program Review subcommittee, UCC, FSBC, etc.);

d) answer questions about delivery – online, hybrid, short-semester, “on-demand”, or “self-paced” delivery of content;

e) manage forms in the online curriculum system pertaining to microcredentials and distance education, as needed;

f) recommend curricular and pedagogical quality standards consistent with traditional course offerings;

g) recommend faculty and staff professional development standards for distance delivered education;

h) review and report on the quality of online/hybrid curricular and microcredential offerings as part of an end-of-year report

The committee approves all distance delivered courses, often through an abbreviated curriculum process (See Procedures and Policies below).  In partnership with the Office of the Provost, the committee ensures that all faculty teaching a distance delivered course has experience and/or training in online pedagogy.  Training is provided through the Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center in affiliation with the instructional designers in the office of Information Technology.  A full list of the OEMC's responsibilities can be found in the Shared Governance Faculty Handbook Policies. 

OEMC Agenda and Minutes

OEMC Exemplar [updated 02 02 21] 
Faculty Peer Review Rubric for Online and Hybrid Courses [updated 10 11 18]
Policies and Procedures for Online Curriculum Development and Delivery [updated 08 12 15]
Information on Course Caps in Online and Hybrid Courses [09 27 17]
Changes to Online/Hybrid Course Definitions [updated 08 12 15]

In 2018, the Online Education Council (OEC) was charged by the University Academic Senate to “Make recommendations for peer review of hybrid and online courses.” OEC has completed that work and developed a rubric that reflects best practices in online/hybrid education. The rubric is an amalgam of peer review research from a variety of sources, notably the Quality Matters Higher Education Rubric 2011 – 2013 Edition, the Penn State Peer Review Guide, and Chickering, A. & Gamson, Z. (1987). The rubric has been pilot tested twice by faculty with significant experience in online/hybrid education, and their feedback was instrumental in fine-tuning the rubric. OEC extends their appreciation to those faculty involved in the pilot tests.  Beginning in Fall 2019, this rubric must be used in peer review evaluations of any teaching in an online or hybrid format. In 2020, the name changed to Online Education and Microcredential Council (OEMC).

The committee encourages faculty to send students to the Online Information for Students site prior to the beginning of the semester, where students can self-assess his or her readiness to take a hybrid or online course.

Faculty Development Opportunities
The Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center offers training on how to engage students in online and hybrid courses, with levels ranging from beginning to advanced. Please visit the Faculty Resources for Online Education website for links to training options as well as other resources intended to support hybrid and online teaching and learning.

Microcredential Review and Approval Process
To be recognized as “university-approved” programs, all proposed microcredentials require approval by the Online Education and Microcredential Council (OEMC) and the Office of the Provost. This is a five-step process.

Microcredential Prospectus Form (Part 1)

Detailed Microcredential Form (Part 2)

Step 1
For all credit bearing and non-credit bearing microcredentials, complete and submit the Microcredential Prospectus Form (Part 1).

Step 2
The OEMC chairperson may schedule a meeting with associated personnel connected to the proposed microcredential, to discuss information in the Prospectus Form (Part 1). This meeting will take place during a regularly scheduled OEMC meeting, which currently occurs on Wednesdays from 1pm - 2pm. 

Step 3
Once the prospectus form Part 1 is approved by the OEMC, complete and submit the Detailed Microcredential Form (Part 2). 

Step 4
The OEMC chairperson may schedule a second meeting with associated personnel connected to the proposed microcredential to discuss information in the Detailed Microcredential Form (Part 2). This meeting will take place during a regularly scheduled OEMC meeting which currently occurs on Wednesdays from 1pm - 2pm. The OEMC meets during the academic year only.

Please be aware that additional documentation will need to be submitted toward ensuring the microcredential can be implemented—i.e., catalog copy (if credit-bearing); information that helps the digital badge to be created and awarded through Acclaim, a third-party badge awarding platform; and other documentation as requested by the OEMC.

Step 5
When the Detailed Form (Part 2) has been approved by the OEMC, proposers will work with specified personnel to finalize the microcredential (e.g., Provost’s office, Budgeting, Institutional Marketing, Adult and Continuing Studies, etc.). 

Erica Hamilton (Chair)  
Simone Jonaitis (Vice Chair)

Kelli Damstra - faculty member with expertise in online pedagogy
Cheryl Dunn - faculty member with expertise in online pedagogy
Bradford Dykes - faculty member with expertise in online pedagogy
Barb Hoogenboom - one member of UCC (appointed by the Chair of UCC)
Mark Staves - Chair (or designee) of the Graduate Curriculum and Program Review Committee

Graduate Student Representative

Simone Jonaitis (ex officio) Executive Director of the Center for Adult and Continuing Studies 
Kim Kenward (ex officio) Director of eLearning Technologies
Rhonda Lubberts (ex officio) Associate Vice President of Institutional Marketing
Christine Rener (ex officio) Director of the Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center and Vice Provost for Instructional Development and Innovation
Ellen Schendel (ex officio) Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs
Pam Wells (ex officio) Associate Vice President and Registrar