Improve Online Course with Universal Design
Most people think of Universal Design as an approach to designing accessible buildings and meeting the legal requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. However, this philosophy can also be applied to classroom instruction. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework that fosters inclusive learning and teaching environments by strategically giving students options in the way they navigate content, show what they know, and are motivated to persist in their learning (“The Three Principles of UDL,” 2014). It benefits all learners, not only those with disabilities. Made up of three guiding principles, UDL has provided a lens through which to view the teaching and learning options available to students in my online courses and resulted in manageable tweaks that have made a big impact on student satisfaction. The three guiding principles of UDL are representation, action and expression, and engagement.