Universal Design for Learning (or UDL) is based on research in the cognitive neuroscience domain. Proponents of this framework believe that by building flexible learning environments, all learners have a better chance of learning. UDL researchers think that if instructors provide these flexible learning environments to students, a reduction of physical, cognitive, intellectual, and organizational barriers will occur.
The concept of UDL is not new. The belief that not all students learn the same way has been around for decades. As stated by educational researcher Carl Glickman “Effective teaching is not a set of generic practices, but instead is a set of context-driven decisions about teaching. Effective teachers do not use the same set of practices for every lesson . . . Instead, what effective teachers do is constantly reflect about their work, observe whether students are learning or not, and, then adjust their practice accordingly” (1991, p. 6). Reference: Glickman, C. (1991). Pretending not to know what we know. Educational Leadership, 4-9.
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Organizations
The below organizations are good resources to learn timely best practices regarding Universal Design for Learning (UDL).
The Universal Design for Learning Implementation and Research Network (UDL-IRN): (https://udl-irn.org/)
The UDL – IRN is a grassroots organization that supports the scaled implementation and research related to Universal Design for Learning.
CAST: ( www.cast.org )
CAST is a nonprofit education research and development organization that works to expand learning opportunities for all individuals through Universal Design for Learning.
Web Link Resources
Click on the below links to learn more about Universal Design for Learning (UDL).
UDL Guidelines: ( https://goo.gl/tKPz2d )
This graphic organizer can help you identify certain principles and guidelines to implement into a course
UDL and the Learning Brain: ( https://goo.gl/Kayi63 )
Learn how Universal Design for Learning and brain research fit together.
Getting Started: (http://udloncampus.cast.org/page/udl_gettingstarted#.WvCUvIjwZaQ)
Getting Started with UDL: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=88&v=_HHvRzemuHA)
UDL, Technology, and Materials: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=5&v=Z777kK8lHDs)
Universal Design for Learning Remix with Higher Ed Images URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p-lQbZkVuWs
UDL in Higher Education URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O_MCvjkd8Jc
Why We Need Universal Design URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVdPNWMGyZY
UDL Guidelines Structure URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVTm8vQRvNc