Date
14 April 2021

Universally design barrier-free, support-rich, flexible learning opportunities

Suggestion for implementing the strategy ‘Collaboratively planning a universally designed learning environment’

Universal Design for Learning

Universal Design for Learning

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) helps us create barrier-free learning environments that work for everyone.

How UDL has influenced my practice

How UDL has influenced my practice

Anita Patel describes how learning about UDL has changed the way she approaches teaching.

Planning using the UDL thinking wheel

Planning using the UDL thinking wheel

Use the six steps in the UDL Thinking Cycle to guide the planning process.

Take a "people before content" approach.

UDL and differentiation

UDL and differentiation

UDL and differentiation are distinct and interrelated. Together they provide a powerful combination.

Read the blog post UDL vs DI: The Dinner Party Analogy to broaden your understanding.

Universal Design for Learning

Differentiation

Overarching approach that informs all learning-design decisions.

Teaching strategy used when applicable.

Focused on the inclusive design of the whole learning environment at the outset.

Aimed at addressing each learner’s individual levels of readiness, interest, and learning profiles.

Learner and whānau feedback guides the design of the environment.

Kaiako usually makes design decisions.

All have full access to supports and tools, regardless of their needs and abilities.

Specific supports offered to certain learners.

Flexible environment that learners can personalise. 

Focus on learner agency.

Kaiako modifies content and processes to address the needs of each learner.

Learner is supported to self-direct learning and monitor progress.

Kaiako directs learner to specific activities to further their learning.

Source: Adapted from CAST (opens in a new tab/window)

Reflection questions

Reflection questions

Consider using these questions.

  • In what ways do you get to know learners and what’s important to them?
  • In what ways do you get to know whānau insights and aspirations for their tamariki?
  • How has your knowledge of learners and their abilities and preferences influenced the design of teaching and learning?
  • Are there approaches that you usually offer to some students that could be made available to all?

Useful resources

Useful resources

File

Emotional triggers and strategies to support

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Download PDF (25 KB)

File

Key questions to consider when planning lessons

Publisher: CAST

Download PDF

Website

Guide to Universal Design for Learning

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Visit website

Next steps

More suggestions for implementing the strategy “Collaboratively planning a universally designed learning environment”:

Return to the guide “Collaborative planning for learning”

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