Universal design for learning

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1 Definition

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is an instructional design model for designing curricula that engable all individuals to gain knowledge, skills, and enthousiasm for learning.

2 Principle

UDL relies on the idea that there exist three primary brain networks playing different roles in learning. According to UDL Homepage at CAST:

  • Recognition networks: Gathering facts. How we identify and categorize what we see, hear, and read. Identifying letters, words, or an author's style are recognition tasks- the "what" of learning.
  • Strategic networks: Planning and performing tasks. How we organize and express our ideas. Writing an essay or solving a math problem are strategic tasks - the "how" of learning.
  • Affective networks: How students are engaged and motivated. How they are challenged, excited, or interested. These are affective dimensions- the "why" of learning.

Therefore, an universally-designed currulum should offer the following:

  • Multiple means of representation to give learners various ways of acquiring information and knowledge
  • Multiple means of expression to provide learners alternatives for demonstrating what they know, and
  • Multiple means of engagement to tap into learners' interests, challenge them appropriately, and motivate them to learn

More details in executive format can be found in a table in the FORMATEX 2006 paper: Supporting post secondary learners with psychiatric disabilities in online environments. The most detailed model we found is in Grabinger et al., 2008.

3 Links

3.1 Center for applied special technology (CAST)

3.2 Other

4 References

  • Dolan, R. P. & Hall, T. E. (2001). Universal Design for Learning: Implications for Large-Scale Assessment. IDA Perspectives 27(4): 22-25. pdf
  • Grabinger, R. Scott, Cary Aplin and Gitanjali Brenner-Poppanna (2006). Supporting post secondary learners with psychiatric disabilities in online environments, Formatex 2006. PDF
  • Grabinger, R. Scott, Cary Aplin, and Gitanjali Ponnappa-Brenner (2008). Supporting Learners with Cognitive Impairments in Online Environments, TechTrends 52(1), 63 -69. DOI: 10.1007/s11528-008-0114-4 (Access restricted)
  • Hitchcock, C., Stahl, S. (2003). Assistive technology, universal design, Universal Design for Learning: Improved opportunities. Journal of Special Education Technology 18(4). HTML
  • Meyer, A., & O'Neill. L. A. (2000). Supporting the motivation to learn: How Universal Design for Learning can help. Exceptional Parent 30(3): 35-39.
  • Pisha, B., & Coyne, P. (2001). Smart from the start: The promise of Universal Design for Learning. Remedial and Special Education 22(4): 197-203.
  • Rose, David H. and Anne Meyer (eds.) (2006). A Practical Reader in Universal Design for Learning, Harward Education Press, ISBN: 1-891792-29-6
  • Rose, D. H. (2001). Universal Design for Learning: Deriving Guiding Principles from Networks that Learn. Journal of Special Education Technology 16(1): 66-70. PDF
  • Rose, D. H., & Dolan, R. P. (2000). Universal Design for Learning: Assessment. Journal of Special Education Technology 15(4). HTML
  • Rose, D. H., Grogan, D. et al. (2000). Walking the Walk: Universal Design on the Web. Journal of Special Education Technology 15(3). HTML
  • Rose, D. H., & Meyer, A. (2000). Universal Design for Learning. Journal of Special Education Technology 15(1): 67-70.
  • Rose, D. H., Stahl, S. et al. (2002). Universal Design for Learning: Digital text in the classroom. Journal of Special Education Technology 17(2). HTML