Call for Submissions for the 2017 DLIAward Is Now Open – Recognizing Excellence in Digital Courseware

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By Nori Barajas-Murphy, Director, Grant Projects, Online Learning Consortium

We are very excited to announce that the submission window is now open for the 2017 Digital Learning Innovation Award. This is the second year of the #DLIAward competition, which recognizes exemplary higher education faculty-led teams and institutions for advancing student success through the adoption of digital courseware in undergraduate programs.

The submission window runs from March 28 through July 15, 2017. Go to for details on DLIAward criteria, definitions, evaluation rubric, application, deadlines, schedule of informational webinars and other resources. 

2017 DLIA Awards

The Path to the 2017 DLIAward

Twelve members of the DLIAward community convened in early February to revise the DLIA scoring rubric.  Their goal was to establish excellence in courseware implementation in light of the maturing digital courseware landscape. Facilitating the event was OLC’s Director of Grant Projects, Nori Barajas, with assistance from OLC’s Jennifer Mathes, Director of Strategic Partnerships. 

The group of field experts was comprised of three DLIA advisory committee members, four members of the 2016 award review team, and representatives from higher education including EdSurge, MindWires, APLU and the New Media Consortium (NMC). 

During the two-day event, the group debated the digital courseware landscape and the impact courseware has on student success, agreeing that the work in this space is important yet inconclusive. Unanimously, the group believed that annually reviewing the submission criteria and scoring rubric moves the conversation in an honest and open direction and richly informs other partners in higher education.

Through a series of activities, the group agreed that access, innovation, implementation, sustainability will remain essential criteria for the 2017 award submission. The team operationally defined each of the criteria in relation to the digital courseware landscape to better capture implementation quality. 

Additionally, it was decided that a greater emphasis on problem definition and measurable outcomes become part of the 2017 submission. Established and mature digital courseware projects will be accepted for the 2017 award; however, projects in development were determined to lack the credibility to inform other institutions. Emerging projects were considered better suited for a grant rather than an award.


The group believes that the revisions will capture more detail to establish excellence in scalable implementations. Additionally, the submission criteria, when analyzed, establish an annual state of the field snapshot unlike any other research in the field.

Reminder: the submission window runs from March 28 through June 30, 2017.  Get all the details at

Sign up for an informational webinar to learn more about the 2017 DLIAward:

DLIA Rubric Convening Attendees

DLIA Advisory Committee Members

Joe Moreau, Vice Chancellor, Technology, Foothill De Anza Community College 
Dale Johnson, Senior Business Analyst, Arizona State University 
Connie Johnson, Chief Academic Officer and Provost, Colorado Technical University Online

DLIA Review Team

Emma Zone, Vice Provost, Colorado Technical University 
Niki Bray, Faculty/Instructional Designer, University of Memphis 
Nick White, Director, Competency Based Learning Solutions, Capella University 
Sharon Goodall, Director of Innovations, Learning Design & Solutions, UMUC

DLIA Higher Ed Partners

Phil Hill, Educational Technology Consultant and Industry Analyst, MindWires 
Karen Vignare, CEO and Founder, KV Consulting; APLU
Peggy Snyder, Strategic Advisor, The New Media Consortium 
Sunny Lee, Sr. Product Manager, Higher Ed, EdSurge; Co-Founder and Director of Product, Badge Labs

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