The Peer Reviewed Courses
All Saylor Academy courses will eventually be peer reviewed by a panel of three subject matter experts with college-level teaching experience. This peer review panel will carefully examine and assess course structure and design, the quality and scope of assigned materials, and the course’s alignment with stated learning outcomes. The goal of the peer review process is to ensure that our courses are accurate, comprehensive, and pedagogically sound.
The peer review process begins when a course has been finalized and uploaded to our site. Saylor staff alerts the responsible, discipline-specific peer review facilitator, who in turn reaches out to several peer reviewers for their assistance. These peer reviewers work through the course and its exam and provide detailed feedback on a variety of criteria via a peer review form. Next, the peer review facilitator organizes and coordinates these forms into one peer review synthesis report, which details all required and recommended edits and updates to the course. Once this report has been approved, Saylor staff asks one of its faculty members to implement the proposed edits to the course, and, finally, uploads all completed edits to the site.
What this means for our students
Once one of our faculty members begins to implement the proposed edits, we will add a symbol to the top of that course, a wrench, along with a note that the course is currently being improved through our peer review process. It will be roughly three months from the time this note is posted to the time the new and improved course is uploaded to our site. In the meantime, students are welcome to work through the course as it currently exists at their own leisure; there’s still a lot to learn there! After the update, students will still be able to access the original version of the course as an “archived” course, but we will no longer be maintaining it.
For a complete list of our peer review panelists and peer review facilitators, please see here.