UDL stems from Universal Design which began with architecture and providing various ways to access buildings so that all persons could enter (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009).
Universal Design for Learning is something that allows alternate paths to and through the curriculum so that all students have the opportunity to succeed no matter their challenges or strengths (Laureate Education, 2009).
Provide Multiple Provide Multiple Provide MultipleMeans of Means of Action and Means of EngagementRepresentation Expression •Options for Recruiting•Options of Perception •Options for Physical Action Interest through Different Modalities •Options for Expression and •Options for Sustaining Communication Effort and Persistence•Options of Language, Expressions, and Symbols •Options for Executive •Options for Self- Function Regulation•Options for Comprehension
Technology enables more methods to be used as optional tools to support UDL principles (http://www.udlcenter.org/resource_library/ articles/udlunplugged) Assistive Technologies such as electric wheelchair or eyeglasses are not optional tools but required for certain students to gain access to the basic learning environment.
Impact on “Deana’s Caring and Sharing Preschool” student learning is positive. UDL provides guidance and tools to follow to encourage educators to seek out and provide specific options to reach the curriculum in various ways. The students have successfully reached all Preschool guidelines as suggested by the State of Kansas with some surpassing the benchmarks six months earlier.
Learning differences vary from person to person. Knowing where the information is getting lost or mistranslated to a student will aid in determining which part of the brain we need to consider when providing the right type of UDL strategy. The chart on the next slide will illustrate the three parts of the brain and how the information is processed.
Recognition • What We Learn • How the brain gathers facts and Networks categorizes what the person perceivesStrategic • How We Learn • How the brain plans and completesNetworks the tasksAffective • Why We Learn • How the person gets motivated andNetworks engaged within a task
UDL and Brain Research helps lend a picture into the Learner’s strengths and weaknesses. The Learner is unique and the differences within the brain networks shows where the UDL options need to be placed for the students. For example, a student who is Spanish speaking may have trouble in the recognition network and would need the information to be presented in a different way such as in his native language.
In today’s society technological advances have opened the doors to many opportunities for Universal Design in Learning with the guidance of Brain research. Examples: Recognition networks: Technology aids in the variety of possible ways to present the material Strategic networks: Technology aids in the possible ways that the task can be completed as such through an interactive website Affective networks: Teachers can use technology to capture the student’s attention and help keep them motivated within the task
CAST is a website that has a multitude of tools that can be utilized to strengthen the classroom. Below are example of three online tools that were beneficial to any classroom: UDL Goal Setter: Aids the educator in keeping focus where it needs to be. Deana’s Caring and Sharing Preschool can use this tool to set goals that will implement UDL methods to provide opportunities in the learning environment to ensure that the students continue to grow
UDL Profile Maker: Aids the educator in forming a clear picture of the class strengths and weaknesses. This information enable the educator to provide the best UDL strategies to truly aid the students. This tool will aid Deana’s Caring and Sharing Preschool in knowing exactly what students need and where within their brain networks the UDL would best be suited. UDL Solutions Finder: This aids the entire school to find the best UDL methods for the curriculum. This will help to keep Deana’s Caring and Sharing Preschool as a solid unit and a collective working towards a common goal-the best education for all students.
UDL is necessary to help schools evolve to the current IDEA standards of ensuring that all students are in the current classroom and making progress within the curriculum. UDL also is aiding the students who are already excelling and helping them move forward as well.
CAST, Inc. (2002–2011). Teaching every student: Tools and activities. Retrieved from http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent/tools/ Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009). Reaching an engaging all learners through technology. Baltimore, MD: Author. National Center on Universal Design for Learning. (2011, March 15). UDL guidelines–Version 2.0. Retrieved fromhttp://www.udlcenter.org/aboutudl/udlguidelines Rose, D., & Meyer, A. (2002). Teaching every student in the digital age: Universal design for learning. Retrieved fromhttp://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent/ideas/tes/