Minnesota Online Quality Initiative Lead Coordinator Receives National Award

Elizabeth (Beth) McMahon, co-lead coordinator of Minnesota Online Quality Initiative (MOQI) and NCTC general health instructor, recently received the Quality Matters Director Award at the 8th Annual Quality Matters (QM) Conference in Portland, Oregon.

The Directors' Award for Exceptional Service is given to members of the QM community who have gone above and beyond common service to the organization. These people have made extraordinary contributions to QM's quality assurance efforts with online and/or blended education at institutions, and for learners.

This award means a lot to me and I sincerely appreciate the role Northland Community and Technical College has played in supporting the work I'm doing with the Minnesota Online Quality Initiative.

"As a Lead Quality Matters Coordinator for the Colleges and Universities of the Minnesota State System, Beth has gone above and beyond her role as QMC to make numerous suggestions for improvement of QM processes and QM products," said Deb Adair, Executive Director of Quality Matters. “Challenged with a tough implementation across a large state with many institutions, she did so with a can-do attitude and spent time with every affiliate campus to ensure they understood what QM is, and what it is not."

Beth has served as one of the System Lead Quality Matters Coordinators since 2012 when MOQI was formed. MOQI provides faculty and staff at Minnesota State institutions with professional development opportunities, information, and resources that promote quality course design and quality course instructional strategies.

“Beth has done an outstanding job providing faculty and staff in our system with support, resources and processes that are vital to designing quality online and blended courses,” said Kim Lynch, Senior System Director for Educational Innovations. “We are grateful for her innovative and systematic approach that contributes to the success of our faculty, staff and students.”

Beth’s contributions across Minnesota have had national impact through her contributions to how QM does business. The lives of many learners have been impacted by her thoughtful approach to implementing QM and leading course reviews for the Minnesota System.

Here are some of Beth's accomplishments within the system:
  • Facilitated 19 sessions of the Applying the Quality Matters (APPQMR) workshop
  • Facilitated five Improving Your Online Course (IYOC) workshop
  • Responsible for mentoring new QM facilitators and campus coordinators in the system
  • Coordinated the work of more than 350 course review teams for official QM course reviews at 28 Minnesota State institutions

Beth emphasized, “This award means a lot to me and I sincerely appreciate the role Northland Community and Technical College has played in supporting the work I’m doing with the Minnesota Online Quality Initiative.” She added, “Over the past several years, I’ve had the privilege of working closely with not only colleagues at Northland and from colleges and universities across the Minnesota State system but also with colleagues across the United States who, through the work Quality Matters is doing in quality assurance, are all striving to improve course quality in online and blended courses.”

Beth also holds many roles with QM and has shared her expertise at QM Conferences and external conferences about QM and how the Minnesota Online Quality Initiative uses QM in their state. She was appointed in 2015 to the Quality Matters Academic Advisory Council; she is also a Master Reviewer, Course Review Manager, online and face-to-face APPQMR and IYOC Facilitator. Three of her own courses are QM certified.

Northland Community and Technical College (NCTC) is a comprehensive college with campuses in Thief River Falls, MN, and East Grand Forks, MN. NCTC also has an aerospace site in Thief River Falls, MN, and a satellite site in Roseau, MN. NCTC offers certificates, diplomas, transfer courses, two-year degrees (A.A.S., A.S., A.A.) in more than 80 areas of study, workforce training and education programs. NCTC is a member of Minnesota State, the fourth-largest system of two-year colleges and four-year universities in the United States, and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association. NCTC is an affirmative action, equal opportunity educator and employer. For more information about Northland Community & Technical College, visit or call 1.800.959.6282.