This CAST UDL Module offers an interactive learning experience in learning about UDL. Use it to teach yourself or use it in a course you are teaching. Universal Design for Learning is the first step in understanding who the learners are in your classroom that can result in helping you universally-design your lessons.
It is all about teaching and reaching all learners!
"Our brain's recognition system helps us gather information and categorize it through what we see, hear, and read. When we recognize letters, words, or a particular writing style, we are using this part of our brain. So how do we help students learn with this part of our brain? When we present information in different ways, we stimulate our student's senses and their learning experience."
Matt Bergman includes a set of online tools that supports UDL Principle 1 that aligns to the related guidelines.
Thank you Matt for this great resource on multiple means of representation!
How can Web 2.0 tools help support UDL Principle 3: the "why" of learning? Here are just a few example on how wikis, podcasts and blogs can provide "muliple means of expression".
How can wikis help?
> Hyperlinks can be used to make meaningful connections between current content and its “real life” uses
> Hyperlinks can be used to connect to news reports and other information that validates the time spent in class on a topic
> Educators can offer students option to work together in an online format on group projects
> Educators can offer students the option to share work product online (either with or without comments and changes available to viewers)
How can podcasts help?
> Educators can offer multiple podcasts or vodcasts that explain content from different angles
> Educators can allow students to use podcasting (such as songs, radio shows, and news reports) and vodcasting (such as music videos, documentaries, and performing arts) technologies alone or as a group to create projects
How can blogs help?
> Educators can use daily and weekly blog postings to clarify choices and communicate to students and parents which parts are choice and which parts are required
> Educators can use blog postings to frequently make connections between the current content and real-life applications
"UDL is included in the section of the Common Core Standards called “application to students with disabilities”. In this section the authors referred to the definition laid out in the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (PL 110-135). The reference to UDL in this section may give the impression that UDL is just for students with disabilities. However, UDL not only applies to students with disabilities, it applies to all other learners as well. All students can benefit from the types of instruction used to reach learners “on the margins,” as the learning needs of all individuals vary a great deal. As such, UDL should be used within inclusive general education classrooms."
What Aligns with UDL?
"There are many ways in which the Common Core Standards align to the UDL framework. Curricula (goals, methods, materials, and assessments) designed using UDL put an emphasis on creating effective, flexible goals, and the Common Core Standards provide an important framework for thinking about what goals will be most effective."
CAST has announced the UDL Curriculum Toolkit, an open source application, that supports the creation of flexible, customizable educational materials that allow all learners to progress to their full potential. The UDL Toolkit can be used to enhance your existing curriculum or to build a web-based unit from scratch.
"The UDL Curriculum Toolkit is a web-based platform that allows for the development and publication of web-based curricula and other content built according to the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL)."
This is an excellent video produced by Maryland Learning Links that provides an overview of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and explores the ways teachers can use this approach to reach all of their students.
Recommend using this video to create an understanding that UDL is about the variability in learning and that by using UDL in practice, we can teach all learners.
"Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework for planning inclusive classrooms. Inclusive education has several goals:
> Deep, creative, critical thinkers
> Self-motivated, self-disciplined learners
> Self-aware, confident students
> Compassionate, cooperative leaders and
> Community members with the skills and understandings to work with and relate to diverse others (Dr. Jennifer Katz, 2012)
UDL proposes to accomplish these goals by creating welcoming, emotionally safe classrooms. All children can recognize that everyone has unique ways of being smart, and that living in community means using our talents to support one another.
UDL makes schools academically inclusive by helping teachers plan instruction so that all learners can participate at their own level, whether that is introductory or challenging. In practice, this means classrooms from grade K-12 will involve learning in many ways – through movement, art, music, literature, and nature – and students have the opportunity to show what they know in ways that fit their strengths."
Thank you Deborah for your insight on UDL and inclusion!
When learning is personal, teaching and learning changes. Teachers' and learners' roles change. Last January, we created a chart comparing Personalization vs Individualization vs Differentiation and a report that explained the difference between these three terms including teacher-centered vs. learner-centered approaches. This chart has been downloaded tens of thousands of times from all over the world and prompted discussions around some of these questions:
> What does personalized or personal learning mean to you?
> How do you see teachers' and learners' roles changing?
> How does a school or district know they are Ready to Transform learning?
> What is Assessment AS Learning?
> Can personalization help close the achievement gap?
> Where are the conversations, models, and examples of personalizing learning?
These questions were part of an interview from Patricia Gomes, a reporter from Porvir in Brazil who wrote an article August 12, 2012 about the chart and resulted in an article and infographic in Portuguese.
Implementing the principles of universal design in online learning means anticipating the diversity of students that may enroll in your course and planning accordingly. These ten key elements will greatly enhance the accessibility and usability of your course for students with and without disabilities.
Step 1: Develop content first, then design. Step 2: Provide simple, consistent navigation. Step 3: Include an accommodation statement. Step 4: Choose CMS tools carefully. Step 5: Model and teach good discussion board etiquette. Step 6: Use color with care. Step 7: Provide accessible document formats. Step 8: Choose fonts carefully. Step 9: Convert PowerPoint™ to accessible HTML. Step 10: If it's auditory make it visual; if it is visual make it auditory.
Snap&Read is a simple one-button toolbar that reads any text on screen in any application, it pulls text out of Flash websites, MS Word docs, PDFs, webpages, and even images, if it looks like text Snap&Read will read it.
This map represents information about state level Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Universal Design (UD) activities across the country. The information was gathered from state and federal website searches and includes state level documents and information shared by higher education institutions.
What is the difference between Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Differentiated Instruction (DI)? In this explanation it appears that UDL often empowers the learner than relying on the modifications by the teacher.
"The significant differences between UDL and DI tend to dwell within the world of the how and when in addressing the diversity of the student and classroom. DI is the modification of the curriculum in order to properly educate the student with his/her specific learning needs or preferences. UDL contrasts this because it addresses the diversity of the student at the construction of the curriculum. UDL also integrates the methods for DI within the lesson or curriculum allowing the student the ability to become more educationally aware so that they are in command of their own education rather than having to rely on the possible crutch of the modifications made by the educator."
How can Web 2.0 tools help support UDL Principle 2: the "how" of learning? Here are just a few example on how wikis, podcasts and blogs can provide "muliple means of expression".
How can wikis help?
> "Educators can post hyperlinks to demonstrations of multiple models of skilled performance
> Educators and students alike can offer ongoing relevant feedback to student contributions; students can contribute/alter content anonymously and still receive relevant feedback"
How can podcasts help?
> "Students can use podcasting and vodcasting to share what they know; these can be used as informal assessments (to guide educators in determining what to teach in the future) as well as for formal assessment"
How can blogs help?
> "Students can use text, graphics, video, voice/sound files, and other easy-to-create electronic tools to interact with the material and “show what they know”"
- From the course, SPED 210 (6210)|TRED 210 (6110): Universal Design for Learning - Implications for Career Assessment and Transition at The George Washington University
Jackie Gerstein proposes an experiential flipped classroom learning model where she believes there a great opportunity to change the predominant didactic model of education that is especially prevalent in upper elementary through graduate school education.
"UDL is a strategy, a process that provides opportunities for all students, not just those with special needs (but I believe all learners have special needs), to be successful learners. This is the same goal for the flipped classroom model designed as an experiential learning cycle.
This model has experiential learning at the core of the learning process with the content videos supporting the learning rather than being the core or primary instructional piece. Experiential learning is the process of making meaning from direct experience.. Simply put, experiential learning is learning from experience. Experiential learning can be a highly effective educational method[ It engages the learner at a more personal level by addressing the needs and wants of the individual. For experiential learning to be truly effective, it should employ the whole learning wheel, from goal setting, to experimenting and observing, to reviewing, and finally action planning. This complete process allows one to learn new skills, new attitudes or even entirely new ways of thinking. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Experiential_learning)"
Thank you Jackie for your insight in creating this model where all learners can experience success!
How do you personalize learning? First you need to know what personalized learning is. Here is a new site that provides resources, research, models, examples, and stories. This page provides a toolkit that can help your organization begin personalizing learning to meet the needs of all learners.
Check out the chart that compares Personalization, Differentiation, and Indivdiualization. You can download the chart and a report that explains the details of the chart. The Three Stages of Personalized Learning Environments can help you determine where you are in personalizing learning.
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) provides the framework in personalizing learning for all learners. UDL also guides the design of the Personal Learner Profile[TM]. It provides the UDL lens to select the appropriate tools for the Personal Learning Backpack[TM]. UDL guides how Personalized Learning meets the Common Core.
"As a framework, UDL requires educators to think proactively about the variability of all learners. In consideration of the UDL Critical Elements, educators implementing UDL should use a backwards design instructional process that incorporates the following five steps."
> Step 1: Establish Clear Outcomes
> Step 2: Anticipate Learner Variability
> Step 3: Measurable Outcomes and Assessment Plan
> Step 4: Instructional Experience
> Step 5: Reflection and New Understanding
The Universal Design for Learning Implementation and Research Network (UDL-IRN) is a grassroots organization that supports the scaled implementation and research related to Universal Design for Learning. You can download the PDF of this UDL Instructional Process on this site.
Carol Mortensen has created a MentorMob playlist on Universal Design for Learning. This playlist can jumpstart your understanding of UDL, the framework that can be used to design curriculum and lessons for all learners.
"Universal Design For Learning (UDL) is a concept born from the work of architects to develop buildings that remove physical barriers so that they are accessible to all people. From this idea, educators began to focus on removing the barriers that work against learning. UDL improves the possibility of a positive academic outcome and deliberately focuses on meeting the individual needs of the students. In addition, resources are provided through websites that support the educator implementing UDL ideals.
This playlist provides an overview of UDL along with some interactive activities to further understanding."
Thank you Carol for creating this all important playlist for teachers everywhere!
Jackie Gerstein shares Wes Fryer's "Making Media for the Curriculum" that illustrates the media that can support multiple means of expression and ways for all leanrers to demonstrate understanding of the content.
The following guidelines related to Provide Multiple Means of Action and Expression are addressed when learners make personalized meaning of the content:
> Use social media and interactive web tools (e.g., discussion forums, chats, web design, annotation tools, storyboards, comic strips, animation presentations)
> Compose in multiple media such as text, speech, drawing, illustration, comics, storyboards, design, film, music, visual art, sculpture, or video
> Use web applications (e.g., wikis, animation, presentation)Use story webs, outlining tools, or concept mapping tools
This fact sheet is intended to help parents, educators and administrators learn more about how UDL can support gifted and talented students in their schools and districts.
>> How does UDL apply to learners who have gifts and talents? >> How does UDL allow learners with gifts and talents to succeed within the general education classroom? >> Can't other learners benefit from similar types of instruction? >> What is being done to promote the implementation of UDL? >> Where can I find more information?