Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
» Universal Design for Learning
is a research-based framework for designing
curricula developed by researchers at the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST)
connects the principles of universal design to principles of learning supported
by brain research.
In 2008, universal design was officially defined in the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEOA, 2008) as,
"Universal Design for Learning (UDL) means a scientifically valid framework
for guiding educational practice that — (A) provides flexibility in the ways
information is presented, in the ways students respond or demonstrate knowledge
and skills, and in the ways students are engaged; and (B) reduces barriers in
instruction, provides appropriate accommodations, supports, and challenges, and
maintains high achievement expectations for all students, including students
with disabilities and students who are limited English proficient. [HEOA, P.L.
An array of resources and information can also be found at the National Center on Universal Design for Learning. Watch the video on UDL Principles and Practices at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pGLTJw0GSxk
According to the UDL definition, there are three central brain networks that are important to how we consider the ways we provide and receive information. These pertain to how students recognize, express and engage with information and are defined as:
The Recognition Network: How are students expected to identify, interpret,
or recognize the information given?
The Strategic Network : How are students expected to express or communicate
their understanding of information?
The Affective Network: What is the interest of the student or what is the
motivation/value in learning the information.
For additional resources on practical applications using a UDL approach visit the following: