Friday, May 31, 2013

Universal Design: A Plan for Participation & Action

Universal Design of Learning (UDL) and more historically, Universal Design as it relates to architecture and environmental barriers have been around for decades. There has been ongoing research in this area with a need for much more completed by those who are enacting these principles on a daily basis.  The National Center on Universal Design and the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) have a number of research articles and resource to review. The provide some clarification on what universal design is, how it is applied by teachers and the impact it has on students, learning and effective practice.  There are some free resources that are available to help with the design of materials and instruction. The CAST online learning tools are ready to use for teachers and families. They provide examples of lessons which can be used, adapted books and many other ideas. They are actively trying to compile UDL lesson plans and other examples of UDL. Please visit their site and consider adding to the resources as well as taking advantage of what is already available. Everything is free and can be created in multiple languages. For some of the adapted stories, it would be wonderful to have students be a part of their creation. In addition there are some higher education lesson plans for those of you who teach at the university level.

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