/ Policies

Professional Development Standards

Our professional learning platform offers educators an opportunity to explore several different topics. When designing our professional learning opportunities, we partner with various organizations that provide subject matter expertise. As we learn about possible improvements in the delivery and consumption of professional learning, we are mindful of the National Quality Standards for Online learning and apply these standards whenever possible. 

Below are standards adapted from The National Standards for Quality Online Courses1. Michigan Virtual utilizes these standards when building content or adding vendor courses to our professional learning platform. 

  • The overall design of the course is made clear to the learner at the beginning of the course. The course materials include support services essential to learner and instructor success. Course instructions articulate or link to relevant information and services.
  • The online course provides learners with various content options that promote their mastery of content and are aligned with state or national content standards.
  • The online course incorporates instructional materials, activities, resources, and assessments that are aligned to standards, engage all learners, and support the achievement of academic goals.
  • A variety of assessment strategies are used throughout the course geared toward learning and engagement and learners are provided with feedback on their progress.
  • The course design reflects a commitment to accessibility so that all learners can access all content and activities and to usability so that all learners can easily navigate and interact with all course components. Online course materials, activities, and assessments are designed to ensure that all learners have access to the same information and are able to engage in the same interactions and within the same time frame. The course, developed with universal design principles in mind, addresses Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by following (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) WCAG 2.0 AA standards. This does not guarantee or imply that particular country/federal/state/local accessibility regulations are met. Please consult with an accessibility specialist to ensure that all required accessibility regulations are met.

We strive to provide professional learning opportunities based on the latest education research. We frequently use external subject matter experts who help identify best practices and guide our instructional design team as they build online modules. Michigan educators who access our professional development services routinely offer satisfaction ratings above 90%. As part of our continuous improvement process, we actively seek user feedback to make revisions, learn about areas of concern, and gather suggestions for additional offerings. 

If learners have feedback about the content or design of our courses, we encourage them to share it with us using our ticketing system. Tickets that are tagged “Issues with PLP Course Content: Content Error,” “Issues with PLP Course Content: Content Bias, or “Issues with PLP Course Content: Course Design Issue” will be flagged for review by our Director of Customer Care and our Senior Director of Professional Learning. 

Information on NSQ: Quality Online Courses. National Standards for Quality Online Learning. (2019, September 30). Retrieved November 16, 2022, from https://www.nsqol.org/the-standards/quality-online-courses/

Limited Course Capacity

We’re sorry to inform you that we have reached capacity for several of our Semester 1 and Trimester 1 courses. You’ll notice when attempting to enroll students in our Student Learning Portal that some courses are unavailable. While we are no longer accepting new enrollments for these courses at this time, many courses continue to remain open for enrollment.

With many students across the state 100% remote, demand for our online courses is greater than ever before. Because every course we offer is taught by a Michigan-certified teacher, this high volume of enrollments has created capacity issues for our teachers who provide each and every student with individual feedback.

While the Michigan Virtual team anticipated and planned for significant increases in student enrollments this Fall, the increased demand we’ve experienced has been unprecedented. As a result, we are taking steps to hire even more part-and full-time teachers to support larger numbers of student enrollments for Semester 2 as well as for Trimester 2 and 3. 

For schools that still need online learning options this year, please fill out the form at the bottom of our virtual pathways page to meet with someone to discuss other solutions. While some of our teacher-led courses are full, we may still have the capacity to help you in upcoming terms or can discuss timing to implement a whole-school or collaborative program in which local teachers from your school/district use our online course content to teach students. We also have free course content and resources available for you to use.

We know this is an incredibly stressful time for all, and we’re sorry if the courses you’re looking for are unavailable. We never want to turn away a student who wants to learn from us. Our top concern, however, is student success, and we have a policy to not take on additional enrollments if we cannot guarantee that all students will have a quality online learning experience. 

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate the unusually high volume of enrollments we are receiving.