Course Design to Support the Greatest Number of Students
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework for making learning inclusive. UDL emerged from the movement in the field of architecture known as Universal Design, a broad concept advocating design of architectural environments to be usable by all people.
Universal Design has gradually expanded from structural environments to learning environments. UDL promotes the idea of creating learning environments that are compatible with a greater majority of students, which in turn reduces the need to individualize (or retrofit) curricula, methods, materials, and assessments; and thus, reduces the need for individualized accommodations.
Accessible design focuses on ensuring that the course development process includes consideration for needs of people with disabilities. The UDL and the accessible design processes both aim to address the needs of learners that do not fit into the category of “ordinary” or “typical.”
As you design your courses, consider incorporating design strategies that will support the greatest number of students. This Accessibility Basics Handout provides guidelines that can assist you in making your course more accessible.