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Institutional Readiness

SUNY Online is a system-wide effort designed to maximize online-enabled learning opportunities for all SUNY students current and future. To answer your questions about SUNY Online and to be sure your campus is prepared and has the opportunity to participate fully, System Administration is offering assistance, at no cost, to help campus leadership teams assess their institutional readiness for SUNY Online efforts, including SUNY Online Plus Programs and SUNY Online Signature Programs.

Why Does Institutional Readiness Matter?
  • The quality of online-enabled education is a frequently voiced concern, and this process will help address concerns about quality on your campus and ensure you know what it takes to deliver a high-quality experience to your students.
  • SUNY Online calls for an expansion of degree programs available online across the system. Ensuring quality at the degree program level requires support and commitment of campus leadership. This process will engage your campus leadership team to build that support and commitment.
  • This process will allow you to explore the benefits your campus may be able to receive through participation in SUNY Online. We offer supports designed for students, faculty, and campuses through SUNY Online. By participating in this process you will become aware of the supports available and can determine how to leverage those supports to benefit your students and faculty.
  • Use this process to learn what it takes to be as successful as possible in your online-enabled learning efforts.
  • This process will help you identify areas in which you can improve processes and policies on your campus to save time, money, and improve quality.

What is the SUNY Online Institutional Readiness Process Like?

This is a three-part campus consulting engagement process, facilitated by expert leaders in online learning, using a nationally recognized standard for quality.  The process is outlined below:

STEP 1: Overview of Process and Campus Commitment / Expectations

1-2 hrs (virtual or on campus)

Engagement with Campus Leadership, and could include Campus Community

  • Campus background and strategy/goals for online learning.
  • Update on SUNY Online and discussion of campus role
  • Review of Online Learning Consortium Quality Scorecard - Nine categories of quality and 75 indicators
  • Outline process and time frame deliverables

STEP 2: Self Assessment

1 day (on campus)

Engagement with Campus Leadership

  • Individuals complete self-assessment
  • Facilitated discussion to determine consensus ratings
  • Identify best practices
  • Identify areas where gaps need to be closed to meet requirements of quality indicators

STEP 3: Implementation Planning

1 day (on campus)

Engagement with Campus Leadership

  • Individuals document best practices & identify possible actions to close gaps
  • Facilitated discussion for consensus building
  • Proposal for comprehensive implementation plan:
    • Org Structure
    • Sustain best practices
    • Close gaps
    • Benchmarking
    • Continuous Quality Improvement

What is the Online Learning Consortium Scorecard?

The Online Learning Consortium (formerly Sloan-C) Quality Scorecard is the most comprehensive quality standard for the administration of distance learning programs that exists. It was developed by a team of distance learning leaders across the US and has been strongly endorsed by the Online Learning Consortium, the leading organization for quality in online learning. The quality indicators align closely to both Middle States standards and NYS Education Department standards/criteria for distance learning programs and serve as a good framework for campuses to use in either building programs or assessing their readiness to ensure quality and success in online learning.

Quality Framework

75 indicators across 9 categories:

  • Institutional Support
  • Technology Support
  • Course Development and Instructional Design
  • Course Structure
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Social and Student Engagement
  • Faculty Support
  • Student Support
  • Evaluation and Assessment
Who Should Be Involved?

This process is designed to engage the campus leadership team representing academic leadership as well as all of the functional and infrastructure areas covered by the quality indicators in the scorecard. The required roles on the campus include, but are not limited to:

  • Provost
  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Chief Student Affairs Officer
  • Faculty Governance Leader
  • Program Director(s)
  • Distance Learning Leader (if this position exists)
  • Library Director
  • Institutional Research Coordinator
  • Academic Leadership (Deans/Dept Chairs)

Lorrie Clemo, Former Provost, Vice President for Academic Affairs SUNY Oswego

“The SUNY Online Institutional Readiness Process helped our campus design a beneficial strategy for improving online learning that has led to improvement in student satisfaction, quality coursework and rapid online enrollment growth.”

“Although SUNY Oswego has offered online courses for more than fifteen years and we were one of the first SUNY colleges to offer online degree programs with SUNY Online, we wanted to ensure that students experienced the same high quality and personalized learning they receive in face-to-face direct instruction. We were compelled to bring better quality and efficiency to course development and delivery of the online experience. Another positive outcome was the validation for our campus that many of the things we are already doing represent best practices in ensuring quality in online learning. The Readiness Process greatly contributed to our continued success in providing over 350 high quality, fully online course sections each semester.” 

Impact Study

Institutional Readiness IR Impact Study Report>

An impact study was conducted to determine how the IR process has impacted campuses and to ensure that the process is effectively meeting campus needs. The report explains the details of this study and the findings, which include recommendations to campuses getting started with the process.

How Do You Participate?

For more information on the institutional readiness process, or to initiate the process with your campus, please contact: Dan Feinberg at or 518-320-1133

A PDF version of the information displayed on this page can be found by clicking here: SUNY Online Institutional Readiness One Pager

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