Self-assessment against iNACOL standards
All online courses must be assessed against iNACOL’s Standards for Quality Online Courses prior to their submission to UC for “a-g” review. For an online course to be considered for “a-g” approval, it must fulfill all 15 of the UC-identified “power standards” from the iNACOL course standards and satisfy at least 27 (or 80 percent) of the remaining standards.
Since the California Learning Resource Network (CLRN) is supported by the California Department of Education, their scope of work is limited to reviewing online courses from online institutions for use in California public schools. In lieu of a course obtaining CLRN certification, an institution will conduct a self-assessment of an online course against the iNACOL course standards.
Self-assessment vs. CLRN certification
A self-assessment against the iNACOL course standards is required for the following institutions and courses:
- Online course publishers serving only private institutions
- Private institutions
- Teacher-created online courses from public institutions open only to students within the local district
- Courses from online course publishers serving public institutions that do not align with a set of California Content Standards or Common Core State Standards
Online courses from public online schools and online course publishers serving public institutions that align with a single set of content standards will obtain certification from CLRN.
For online courses that are purchased or licensed from an online course publisher, it is the responsibility of the online course publisher to either obtain CLRN certification or to conduct a self-assessment of the course against the iNACOL course standards.
Conducting a self-assessment
To begin a self-assessment against the iNACOL Standards for Quality Online Courses, please complete the Online Course Self-Assessment Form [PDF]. A separate form must be completed for each individual online course and is a required component when submitting your new course submission to UC for “a-g” review via the Online Update website. Every three years, a self-assessment needs to be re-conducted against the iNACOL course standards before an online course is re-reviewed by UC for “a-g” approval.
Public online schools and online course publishers serving public institutions with online courses that align with a set of California Content or Common Core State Standards will instead submit their courses for CLRN certification.