Assuring quality online learning: The ASCILITE Technology Enhanced Learning Accreditation Scheme (TELAS)

ASCILITE session

Dominique Parrish
University of Wollongong

Allan Christie

Catch this session

Tuesday 5 December, 3.45pm – 4.45pm
Stream 5
Room C204


There has been a significant increase in the number of students choosing to engage in online learning (Hodge et al. 2014). Estimates suggest that in the last twelve years there has been a 263% increase of students enrolling in online courses (OLC, 2016). Additionally, institutional leaders are progressively recognizing that online learning is crucial to long-term institutional success and profitability (Bowen, 2013). However, while online learning has the potential to transform the business and viability of higher education institutions, there is also a critical need to identify how the quality of online learning can be assured (Kidney, Cummings, & Boehm, 2007; Salmon 2013).
Professional associations, such as ASCILITE have a major role to play in regard to assuring the quality of online learning in higher education (Frydenberg, 2002). This presentation will provide an overview of an ASCILITE initiative – The Technology Enhanced Learning Accreditation Scheme (TELAS), which is being conceptualized to develop an internationally benchmarked scheme that will assess and assure the quality of online learning.
The TELAS will be implemented across three operational phases. The first phase will result in the production of a TEL accreditation framework, which will be the basis of the instrument used to conduct the quality assessment of online learning and a TELAS web portal. This presentation will showcase the TELAS framework and outcomes from Phase 1, explain the details of the next two phases and describe the intended approach and perceived benefits of the entire accreditation scheme.

Bowen, W.G. (2013). Higher Education in the Digital Age. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Frydenberg, J. (2002). Quality Standards in e-Learning: A matrix of analysis. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 3(2)
Hodge, A., Love, B., Grandgenett, N. F., & Swift, A. (2014). “A Flipped Classroom Approach: Benefits and Challenges of Flipping the Learning of Procedural Knowledge.” In P. R. Lowenthal, C. S. York, and J. C. Richardson (Eds.), Online Learning: Common Misconceptions, Benefits and Challenges . Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishing.
Kidney, G., Cummings, L., & Boehm, A. (2007). Toward a Quality Assurance Approach to E-Learning Courses. International Journal on ELearning, 6(1), 17-30.
Online Learning Consortium (OLC), (2016). Online learning catches up to traditional college. Retrieved from
Salmon, G. (2013). E-tivities: The Key to Active Online Learning (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Routledge.

About the authors

Dominique Parrish

Dominique is currently the Associate Dean (Education) in the Faculty of Science, Medicine and Health at the University of Wollongong. She has over 30 years experience in education and held numerous leadership roles including project manager of three national learning and teaching grants, external evaluator for two national learning and teaching grants, Treasurer, Vice-President and now President of ASCILITE. Dominique is also a Lead Editor of the Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice (JUTLP) and a member of the Australasian Journal of Educational Technology (AJET) Management Committee. Dominique is currently co leading the Technology Enhanced Learning Accreditation Scheme (TELAS) initiative, which is seeking to develop a formal process for assessing and accrediting the quality of online learning. Dominique’s other research interests include leadership in higher education and emotional intelligence.

Allan Christie

Allan is currently the Vice-President, eLearning for Blackboard APAC and this reflects his 30+ years of experience as both an academic and industry leader in the area of eLearning. During his academic career, Allan published extensively and presented at many national and international conferences and was recognised for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at the University of South Australia. Through his long industry association with ASCILITE he was awarded a Life Member of the Society in 2003 and currently has the role of Treasurer. Allan has taken on a “thought-leadership” role in the region which includes conference presentations, panel membership, industry association involvement and social media (blog, twitter) engagement.