Online Program Management (OPM)

Introduction, FAQs, and Committee

Online courses and programs are becoming increasingly important as colleges and universities meet the needs of a wide range of learners. High quality online experiences can bring an outstanding UM education to learners across Montana, the region, and beyond.

There is considerable potential to considerably expand the range and scale of UM’s online programs, and to achieve this we are moving through a process to select an Online Program Management (OPM) company as a partner. UM relies on partners in many areas to provide technical and professional services that help us achieve our goals, and many of the universities that have successfully innovated and grown their online presence have done this with the assistance of an OPM.

Frequently Asked Questions about OPMs


RFP Committee

  •  Abbigail Belcher, ASUM representative
  • Cassandra Hemphill, Missoula College Faculty Association
  • Bob Hlynosky, Procurement Manager
  • Adrea Lawrence, Interim Dean of the Phyllis J. Washington College of Education and Human Sciences
  • Maricel Lawrence, Executive Director, UMOnline
  • Mark Pershouse, Faculty Senate Chair-Elect
  • Daisy Rooks, University Faculty Association
  • Renae Scott, Interim Chief Information Officer
  • Robert Squires, Director, UMOnline
  • Scott Whittenburg, Vice President for Research and Creative Scholarship and Dean of the Graduate School

OPM Proposals and Feedback Form

Please review the proposals UM received from OPMs Pearson and Wiley and submit your feedback.

* indicates a required field

Timeline and Information

August 2018 Three OPMs make informational presentations at UM Completed
October 2018 RFP Committee formed Completed
December 2018 Presentation at 12/6/18 Faculty Senate meeting Completed
December 21, 2018 RFP issued on MT state website Completed
Jan. 9, 2019 Pre-proposal conference Completed
Jan. 9, 2019 Deadline for receipt of written questions Completed
Jan. 16, 2019 Deadline for posting written responses to MT state website Completed
Feb. 6, 2019 RFP response due date Completed
Feb. 21, 2019 Notification of vendor interviews/product demonstrations from finalist scoring  Completed
Apr. 3-4, 2019 Vendor interviews/product demonstrations/feedback requested from campus community Completed
April 2019 Presentation at 4/18/19 Faculty Senate meeting  
Apr. 29, 2019 OPM partner identified by RFP committee  
Apr. 30, 2019 Sample OPM contracts posted on OPM website  
Summer 2019 Selected OPM partner visits UM to learn UM systems, policies, procedures in order to finalize market research  
Summer 2019

Contract is negotiated by UM Procurement office, Office of the Provost, and UMOnline. Contract is drafted and shared with Academic Officers, Faculty Senate, UFA, MCFA, and ASUM for feedback. OPM base contract is finalized.

Fall 2019

Academic units and OPM identify programs on which both want to collaborate; can include existing online programs, new online versions of existing campus-based programs, as well as potential new programs.

Level I notifications submitted for existing campus-based programs for which units intend to develop an online version (this is a campus level approval.)

UM and OPM start working together to market/recruit for the selected existing online programs, new online versions of existing campus-based programs, as well as potential new programs.


Spring 2020 Projected initial increase in online program enrollment for existing online programs that opt into OPM support  
Spring 2020 Projected earliest launch of new online versions of existing campus-based programs