Quality Matters is a leader in quality assurance for online education and has received national recognition for its peer-based approach to continuous improvement in online education and student learning.
Both Ashford University and University of the Rockies have committed to implementing the Quality Matters standards for the design of online courses. These standards ensure that online courses promote engagement and provide students with the tools they need to learn.
As of December 31, 2013, Ashford University had a total of 579 courses officially certified by Quality Matters. This number differs from the total number of certifications received because Quality Matters has reviewed some courses more than once. A breakdown of the numbers by college is below.
|Forbes™ School of Business||188||210|
|Health, Human Services, and Sciences||93||130|
As of December 31, 2013, University of the Rockies had a total of 132 courses certified by Quality Matters.
|School of Organizational Leadership / School of Professional Psychology — Shared courses||16|
|School of Organizational Leadership||109|
|School of Professional Psychology||39|
*There are two courses that changed college ownership, so we created a macro that would delete duplicates across colleges (while still giving credit to each college for the courses that each submitted and certified). The total number at the bottom (578) is accurate and does not include the two courses that were submitted by different colleges.
For the fifth year running, Ashford University completed a survey of its graduates; the survey again demonstrates Ashford's success at delivering important outcomes to its graduates. With minor exceptions, these responses also reflect answers given by currently active students to similar questions:
Ashford also asks alumni about how they view the return on their investment in their education, as measured by their salaries before and after attending Ashford. Based on alumni survey responses reported in 2014 from our Bachelor's degree earners, it is estimated that the average salary of these alumni is 9.6% greater than the average salary they were earning when they first enrolled at Ashford. Our graduate-degree earners do even better: the average salary of these alumni is estimated at 11.7% greater than their average salary upon first enrolling at Ashford. These survey results reaffirm that an Ashford education is creating a positive return on investment for alumni. At a time in our nation when the incomes of many families are stagnant or even declining, we continue to be pleased with the value proposition offered by an Ashford degree and the benefit it is bringing to the lives of alumni and their families.
While we believe that learning changes lives, it is extremely gratifying to hear it from the students themselves. On this page are just three examples of recent graduates: a husband and wife team looking to advance their careers; a professional woman who started publishing her own magazine; and a Doctor of Psychology who makes a difference through public speaking. These students' lives have transformed as a result of their education.
In 2013, under the leadership of Dr. Richard Pattenaude, Ashford University secured regional accreditation with the WASC Senior College and University Commission.
Also in 2013, Ashford announced that the College of Business and Professional Studies was renamed to the Forbes™ School of Business; the School offers scholarships and speaker series events to its students and alumni and is integrating Forbes content into course curriculum.
At the campus in Clinton, Iowa, Ashford University made several infrastructure improvements.
University of the Rockies is now comfortably at home and recognized in Denver as well as in Colorado Springs. The University has established the Denver Instructional Site, a state-of-the-art facility in the heart of downtown Denver. More recently, the University began offering three new graduate degree programs.
After a four-year commitment, University of the Rockies completed the Higher Learning Commission's (HLC's) academy for assessment of student learning. The University was also accepted into the first class of HLC's academy for student persistence and completion. Only 14 other institutions were selected.
University of the Rockies was honored with the 2013 Making a Difference for Students Award from Quality Matters.
University of the Rockies received the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award, which recognizes the University's commitment to inclusion and diversity — the only school to be so recognized in the state of Colorado.
Ashford University faculty members receive extensive training in teaching with the aid of technology. The University upholds the same high standards of quality for all faculty members, whether they deliver undergraduate or graduate instruction, on campus or online. Online learning activities are closely monitored, and the University collects data on grades and withdrawal rates for each course. In addition, faculty members review each other's performance in the areas of student engagement, fostering critical thinking, instructor expertise, constructive feedback to students, and high expectations. Student end-of-course surveys are another measure the University uses to assess faculty performance.
All faculty members at University of the Rockies must have an earned doctorate from a regionally accredited institution of higher education, or from a foreign equivalent, in a field related to the subject matter they teach. They must also have experience applying their knowledge and skills in their career.
Each full-time faculty member: