In this Kappa Delta Pi Record article, Susan Trostle Brand (University of Rhode Island/Kingston), Antoinette Favazza (University of Rhode Island), and Elizabeth Dalton (TechACCESS) present ways that teachers can use Universal Design for Learning to make lessons accessible to students with a wide spectrum of learning styles and abilities:
Multiple means of representation â€“ Giving students options for perception, language and symbols, and comprehension:
–Â Â Perception â€“ Presenting information, concepts, and assessments in a variety of formats, including PowerPoints, interactive whiteboards, dry erase boards, storyboards, flip charts, graphic organizers, video clips, and using physical props.
–Â Â Language and symbols â€“ Using body language, facial expressions, and gestures and linking illustrations to words, making text-to-chart connections, and providing graphics and animation.
–Â Â Comprehension â€“ Activating studentsâ€™ prior knowledge through brainstorming, reflecting on feedback, K-W-L charts, and scaffolding as students complete a study guide.
Multiple means for engagement â€“ A constructivist approach can support active engagement through:
–Â Â Recruiting student interest â€“ Making the curriculum relevant by integrating childrenâ€™s life experiences and prior knowledge.
–Â Â Sustaining effort and persistence â€“ Communicating specific goals, standards, and short-term objectives, varying the level of challenge and support, fostering collaboration and communication among peers, and encouraging effort, practice, and mastery.
–Â Â Self-regulation â€“ Students set personal goals and become more and more self-motivated, scaffolded by prompts, rubrics, checklists, and notes.
Multiple means for action and expression â€“ Varying physical action, expressive skills and fluency, and executive functions:
–Â Â Physical actions â€“ Providing varied expectations for physical response, timing, and materials â€“ for example, having students use their bodies, voices, hands, and feet to explore materials, allowing the use of a computer rather than a pencil for a test, and using manipulatives or a calculator with a math test
–Â Â Expressive skills and fluency â€“ Giving various choices for expression, varying tools for composition and problem-solving, and offering different levels of practice and support.
–Â Â Executive functions â€“ Students get support for goal-setting, planning, and developing strategies for learning â€“ for example, checklists, outlines, note-taking guides, software tools, colored tabs, and color-coded pages for notes and text.
Multiple means of assessing understanding â€“ This includes methods, formats, scope/range level, product and outcome, and feedback:
–Â Â Methods â€“ Allowing students to choose whether to be tested with multiple-choice questions, an oral question-and-answer session, or an essay, also having extended time.
–Â Â Formats â€“ Using computers, text-to-speech, speech-to-text, and other voiced options for students who need auditory scaffolding, and using photographs, picture symbols, and sign language translation for other students.
–Â Â Scope/range level â€“ Having fewer questions, projects, or in-class work as options, also additional tiers for students to go beyond basic questions.
–Â Â Product and outcome â€“ Some students might create a play, others construct a model, others write an essay or article, others hold a debate, others create a videotape to show mastery of the same standards.
–Â Â Feedback â€“ Teachers might provide immediate feedback on a test, ask a series of increasingly challenging questions, have students self-evaluate by using journals or oral reflection, or solicit peer feedback.
â€śUniversal Design for Learning: A Blueprint for Success for All Learnersâ€ť by Susan Trostle Brand, Antoinette Favazza, and Elizabeth Dalton in Kappa Delta Pi Record, July-September 2012 (Vol. 48, #3, p. 134-139), http://bit.ly/OeUOSF