Instructional Materials Reviews by OSPI
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Teaching and Learning

Course Design and Instructional Materials Adoption Guidance

State laws outline basic education goals and minimal instructional requirements for school districts. They require districts to have policies and procedures in place that guide their selection and adoption of instructional materials for use in classrooms.

Course Design is the process that includes identifying and sequencing essential content supporting students’ skill development towards state learning standards. Course design involves providing appropriate instructional materials, professional development, and support systems for teachers as they implement the course.

Instructional Materials include all materials designed for use by students and their teachers as learning resources to help students to acquire facts, skills, and/or to develop cognitive processes. Types of instructional materials include core, alternative core, intervention, supplemental, and temporary supplemental.

These instructional materials, used to help students meet state learning standards, may be printed or digital, and may include textbooks, technology-based materials, other educational media, and assessments. They may carry different licensing types from open to all rights reserved.

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Course Design and Instructional Materials Toolkit

Instructional Materials Review Icon: Identify; Analyze; Review; Implement

This document models a cyclical strategy for the regular review of courses based on district needs and provides links to state policies, guiding questions, useful resources, and district examples, that will help define best practices for considering instructional materials.

Download: Entire Manual

By Sections:

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Recommended Review Instruments and Resources:

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Frequently Asked Questions

+ Where to go for more information about instructional materials in specific content areas

Visit the OSPI Learning and Teaching home page and select the specific content area of interest. There you will find learning standards, assessments, important updates, and links to suggested resources.


+ What are the state and federal rules that govern basic education and district instructional material selection and approval

  • RCW 28A.150.210 – Basic education – Goals of school districts
  • RCW 28A.150.220 – Basic education – Minimal instructional requirements - Rules
  • RCW 28A.320.230 - legal requirements for district selection and approval of instructional materials
  • RCW 28A.150.230 – District school directors’ responsibilities
  • RCW 28A.640.020 - regulations, guidelines to eliminate discrimination
  • WAC 392-190.055 - textbooks and instructional materials, elimination of bias
  • OSPI Special Education Resource Library - provides information and resources about state and school district responsibilities for providing specialized instructional materials on behalf of students with disabilities.


+ How to get approved for an online learning course or as an online provider

OSPI Alternative Learning Department oversees the online approval process and provides resources to access and support online learning options. Visit the Alternative Learning Department.


+ How to use Open Educational Resources in your classroom

Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching and learning materials that are freely available that can be downloaded, edited and shared to better serve all students. OER include all kinds of content such as textbooks, lesson plans, assignments, games, and other educational materials. Learn more about OSPI's OER Project.



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What's New

Course Design and Instructional Materials Toolkit – policies, guidance, reviews, and downloadable supports

2017 Sexual Health Education Curriculum Review
New interactive version of the report, with tables and links to easy-to-read individual curriculum information pages.

OSPI's Open Educational Resources (OER) Library - 2017 Review Results available

Note: OSPI does not accept materials for review outside of specific review announcements.


   Updated 1/22/2019

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