What is UDL?

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Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework to improve and optimize teaching and learning for all people based on scientific insights into how humans learn. The core principles of UDL are:

  • Provide Multiple Means of Engagement – Stimulate interest and motivation for learning in different ways.
  • Provide Multiple Means of Representation – Present information through different modalities (e.g. visual, auditory, kinesthetic)
  • Provide Multiple Means of Action & Expression – Allow students to demonstrate knowledge and skills in various ways.

The goal of UDL is to create flexible learning environments and activities that meet the needs of every student by reducing physical, cognitive, intellectual, and organizational barriers. It emphasizes reducing obstacles, optimizing access, and providing appropriate accommodations, supports, and challenges while maintaining high achievement standards for all.

Some key strategies in UDL include offering students choices in how they learn and demonstrate knowledge, incorporating technology and media, providing background context, supporting collaboration, promoting self-assessment of learning, and designing instruction that is accessible to students with a wide range of abilities and disabilities. The ultimate aim is to develop expert learners who are purposeful, motivated, resourceful, knowledgeable, strategic, and goal-oriented.


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