Peer Review of Online Courses

NMSU is a member of Quality Matters (QM), which is nationally recognized for its peer-based approach to quality assurance and continuous improvement of online courses. This membership provides opportunities for QM peer reviews using the QM rubric. Three peer review options are available to NMSU-Las Cruces faculty to improve their online courses.

Option 1: Informal QM Reviews

The Quality Matters rubric is used to review your online course. There are multiple ways to receive informal feedback about your online course using this rubric:

  • Use the QM Rubric to self-review your online course.
  • Use the QM Rubric to have peers provide feedback on specific standards in your course.
  • Submit a request for an informal course review by the Online Course Improvement Program (OCIP) staff.
  • Attend professional development workshops designed around the QM standards. Find these workshops through OCIP Events or the Teaching Academy.
  • Apply to OCIP’s One-Year-Plus (1Y+) program offered at the beginning of each academic year.

Option 2: Formal QM Reviews

An online course will gain national recognition if it meets the 8 standards in the Quality Matters rubric. To gain national recognition, the course must be formally reviewed. At NMSU, a formal review consists of a peer review team of three QM certified peer reviewers, two of whom are from NMSU and one from another university. The review team provides feedback about the online course within 5 weeks from the start of the review.  Courses that meet the QM standards for quality online course design will receive national QM recognition.

Formal course reviews by the OCIP team are restricted to Las Cruces main campus faculty/instructors. To request a formal review of your online course, submit a request for a formal course review and consultation to OCIP.

For NMSU community college campus faculty/instructors, please check with your administration to see if your campus has a QM membership and about the possibility of having a formal course review by your campus peers.

Option 3: QM Certified Peer Reviewers

If you are an experienced online instructor, you are eligible to become a certified QM Peer Reviewer. The experience you gain from becoming a certified QM Peer Reviewer offers several advantages:

  • Your approach to online course design improves as you become familiar with the QM rubric.
  • You can participate in faculty-centered online course reviews at NMSU or at other universities nationwide, which can be included in your promotion and tenure packets.
  • You receive a $150 stipend for participating in a formal review.
  • You can participate in future QM mentoring programs at NMSU.


You must have taught an online course within the past twelve months.


To become a certified QM Peer Reviewer, you apply for this opportunity. If selected, OCIP pays for the tuition for the coursework. To become a certified peer reviewer, you take two short online courses, for a total of 4 weeks, offered by Quality Matters. After successful completion of these courses, you then become a certified QM Peer Reviewer.


For more information about the peer review options, contact Sandra Johnson, or (575)646-4476


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