Universal Design for Learning: An Introduction PowerPoint Slides to be used in conjunction with the Facilitator’s Guide Copyright © 2011, East Carolina University. Recommended citation: Metcalf, D. (2011). Universal design for learning: An introduction – A PowerPoint presentation for professional development. Modules Addressing Special Education and Teacher Education (MAST). Greenville, NC: East Carolina University. This resource includes contributions from the module developer and MAST Module Project colleagues (in alphabetical order) Kelly Henderson (Facilitator Guide Editor), Tanner Jones (Web Designer), Diane Kester (Editor), Sue Byrd Steinweg (Project Director), Bradley Baggett (Graduate Assistant), and Sandra Hopfengardner Warren (Principal Investigator). Session Agenda • • • • • Introduction Session Goal and Objectives Background on Universal Design Seven Principles of Universal Design Introduction to Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Session Agenda, continued • • • • • • Brain-Based systems and UDL 3 Principles of UDL UDL and Technology Tools UDL and Differentiated Instruction Summary Evaluation Introduction “We are no longer in Kansas, Toto…” -Dorothy, The Wizard of Oz • Play the video at http://mast.ecu.edu/modules/udl_intro/lib/ media/faces.html . Introduction, continued The Problem • If a teacher who retired even thirty years ago stepped into today’s public school classroom, he or she would be amazed by the student diversity. • Today’s 21st century classroom may be similar to the one described by Ms. Jones’--it is more likely the norm rather than the exception. Introduction, continued • Students come to school with a variety of abilities and disabilities, cultural customs and beliefs, & learning preferences. – Collectively, students speak more than 100 languages. – Family, economic, and home situations vary greatly. Introduction, continued • Our beliefs about the appreciation and value of individual differences in our country, which are reflected in legislative mandates, tell us that all students must have access to the general curriculum. Introduction, continued • This diversity highlights the need for the implementation of curricular frameworks in today’s schools that foster inclusionary instructional practices to reach and teach every student. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) offers such a promising structure. Session Goal and Objectives • The goal of this session is to look at how Universal Design for Learning (UDL) offers a promising framework for teachers planning for 21st century learners. • It will explain for UDL has evolved, what it is, and how it can be used to create positive, flexible options for students. Session Objectives, continued Session Objectives: 1. Define the term UDL and trace its origins. 2. Describe the three basic principles of UDL and give classroom examples of each. 3. Explain how technology tools increase flexibility in a UDL environment. 4. Compare the principles of UDL and differentiated instruction. 5. List the benefits of providing flexible options for students. Background on Universal Design • “About twenty years ago, I remember teaching students over the noise of construction in my school. Construction workers were ‘retrofitting’ our elementary school. They were lowering the water fountains so students in wheelchairs could access them. Doorways to restrooms were also being enlarged and wheelchair ramps put in place. (continued) Background on Universal Design, continued This was a direct result of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) that had recently been signed. This important civil rights legislation significantly helped people with disabilities access public buildings, transportation, communication, employment, and more.” (Debbie Metcalf, 2010) Background on Universal Design, continued • You may remember these changes yourself. • If not, you see examples of this type of accessible design every day. • Perhaps you take them for granted? Background on Universal Design, continued • Think about curb cuts for wheelchairs, switches that are pressed to open doors, and speakerphones. • These physical changes benefitted a wide variety of users, including people with disabilities. Background on Universal Design. continued • The term universal design: – Was coined in architecture and product development by Ron Mace, an architect who happened to have a physical impairment, at the Center for Universal Design in Raleigh, NC; and – Was created to advocate for ‘up front’ planning that would allow accessibility for all to buildings, work, and products. Background on Universal Design, continued • Mace recognized that even though the initial costs may be higher, money and time would be saved in the long run because structures/products/spaces would not need to be retrofitted. Background on Universal Design, continued • Curb cuts, closed captioned television, and other physical/product adaptations were designed up front to help people with disabilities, many other people have also benefitted. • UDL asks that we apply similar principles to learning in our schools. Activity- Background on Universal Design • Watch the video at http://mast.ecu.edu/modules/udl_intro/li b/media/field_trip.html of a student-led field trip around the education building at our university; pay attention to the examples of universal design. 7 Principles of Universal Design The 7 principles of universal design apply across settings. Examples of the principles as they apply to classrooms and other learning environments are noted: 7 Principles of Universal Design, continued 1. Equitable Use: The design is useful and marketable to people with diverse abilities. An example of equitable use is a classroom website that can be accessed at home, in a hospital, or another location for students who can’t be in class. Also, if speech-totext capabilities are added, students with low vision or reading difficulties can access the information auditorly. 7 Principles of Universal Design, continued 2. Flexibility in Use: The design accommodates a wide range of individual preferences and abilities. In a classroom, there might be scissors for both left- and right-handed students and choices in writing instruments. If taking a field trip to a museum, students can click a switch to hear or see an explanation of an exhibit. Sometimes they can even manipulate the display. 7 Principles of Universal Design, continued 3. Simple and Intuitive Use: Use of the design is easy to understand, regardless of the user's experience, knowledge, language skills, or current concentration level. In a classroom, items might be labeled with pictures/symbols/words for access. A computer program that adjusts for ability levels is another example. 7 Principles of Universal Design, continued 4. Perceptible Information: The design communicates necessary information effectively to the user, regardless of ambient conditions or the user's sensory abilities. Examples are adding closed caption to a video or having step by step activity directions recorded on an MP3 player to go along with the written directions on a card or chart. 7 Principles of Universal Design, continued 5. Tolerance for Error: The design minimizes hazards and the adverse consequences of accidental or unintended actions. An example is computer software that guides the user when they make an incorrect response. It might even provide some review or background information on the material presented if needed. 7 Principles of Universal Design, continued 6. Low Physical Effort: The design can be used efficiently, comfortably, and with a minimum of fatigue. A portable or enlarged computer keyboard might help someone with fine motor difficulty express an answer more efficiently and comfortably. 7 Principles of Universal Design, continued 7. Size and Space for Approach and Use: Appropriate size and space is provided for approach, reach, manipulation, and use regardless of user's body size, posture, or mobility. All students can all reach necessary materials and tools. Table and chair heights may be adjusted. There is enough room for a wheelchair to navigate in the classroom if needed. Introduction to Universal Design for Learning • Beginning in 1984, researchers at the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) have led to the development of the blueprint for Universal Design for Learning (UDL). • CAST has applied the principles of universal design to learning for individuals who learn differently with the goal of increasing opportunities for all students in today’s schools. Universal Design for Learning, continued • This work has benefited many more learners than just those with disabilities. • The ongoing work of this nonprofit organization impacts staff development, educational products, legislative policies, and more. Funded in part by the U.S. Office of Special Education Programs. • CAST’s website: http://www.cast.org/ Brain-based Systems and UDL • UDL reflects and supports findings from neurological research • Principles are based on a three-part framework of brain systems, each of which represents different functions and spatiality in the brain. – Recognition system- gathers and receives information (the what of learning). Can occur through sight, sound, touch, and/or movement. Requires attention, memory and perception. Brain-based Systems and UDL, continued – Strategic system- organizes this information and plans how to use or express it to express our own ideas; the how of learning. – Affective system- considers how emotional reactions to experiences affect learning; sometimes referred to as the social side of learning. Research suggests this system drives the learner’s attention and, therefore, memory and meaning. It is the motivation or the why of learning. Activity- Brain-based Systems & UDL • Learn more about these three brain-based learning systems. Watch David Rose, Chief Scientist at the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST), a nonprofit research and development organization for UDL applications to expand learning opportunities for individuals, at http://mast.ecu.edu/modules/udl_intro/lib/m edia/brain.html. 3 Principles of Universal Designs for Learning 3 principles correlate to the brain systems: Principle 1. Multiple means of representation is the what of teaching and learning. It refers to activating the recognition system in the brain by giving learners various ways of gaining information and knowledge. 3 Principles of UDL, continued Principle 2: Multiple means of expression is the how of learning. The activation of the strategic system of the brain allows students to organize and utilize information they have received to show what they know. 3 Principles of UDL, continued Principle 3: Multiple means of engagement is the why of teaching and learning. This utilizes the affective brain system by tapping into learners’ interests, challenging them appropriately, and motivating them to learn. Activity- 3 Principles of UDL Let’s break the principles down further. Watch the video at http://mast.ecu.edu/module s/udl_intro/lib/media/repres entation.html about Multiple Means of Representation, which gives learners various ways of acquiring information and knowledge. Activity- 3 principles, continued Watch the video at http://mast.ecu.edu/modules /udl_intro/lib/media/engage ment.html about Multiple Means of Engagement, which taps into learners' interests, challenges them appropriately, and motivates them to learn. Activity- 3 principles, continued Watch the video at http://mast.ecu.edu/module s/udl_intro/lib/media/expres sion.html about Multiple Means of Expression, which provides learners alternatives for demonstrating what they know. UDL and Technology Tools Technology tools: • can increase the flexibility of UDL environments as teachers strive to adjust learning to meet the needs of diverse learners; • can help all learners access the curriculum by doing this; Technology Tools, continued • Can be ‘high-tech‘ or ‘low-tech’: – A ‘high-tech’ solution typically involves a computer or has computer parts. • For reading- a digital recording of a textbook or a worksheet scanned and read aloud by a computer. • For writing, a talking word processor, word prediction software, talking dictionary, and/or modified keyboard – ‘Low-tech’ solutions use simpler technology. • Slanted writing boards, adapted pencil grips, specialized lined paper, tape recorders, and/or printed labels with essential vocabulary. Technology Tools, continued • Technology increases the flexibility across the three principles. Technology Tools, continued • In small groups, review websites about assistive technologies. Explore the sites and report back to the large group at least two resources and identify their low- or high-technology features: • http://www.abilityhub.com/ • http://www.disabilityresources.org/AT.html • http://www.assistivetechnologies.com/ UDL & Differentiated Instruction • UDL and differentiated instruction support each other. • Planning begins with the learner in mind. • Both approaches assess individual learner strengths and needs up front when charting instruction. UDL & Differentiated Instruction, continued • Prior knowledge, abilities, interests, and learner preferences are used to plan lessons that can be flexible enough to challenge each learner. • Instructional time is maximized for each learner. UDL Principles Differentiated Instruction Elements Multiple Means of Representation Presenting, receiving, interpreting information/concepts; adapting for learner needs. The what of learning. Content – What the teacher plans to teach. Multiple Means of Engagement Increasing participation, adjusting for student interests and cultural backgrounds, adjusting the environment to allow for flexible grouping and access to materials/ technology. The why of learning. Process – Why the teacher chooses a particular method, strategy, or approach to teach content/skills to a given set of learners. (How students will participate and how all are challenged.) Multiple Means of Expression How students respond to information presented and express what they know. The how of learning. Product – How the students will be assessed. Adapted from: Gargiulo, R. and Metcalf, D. (2010). Teaching in today’s classrooms: A universal design for learning approach. Wadsworth Cengage Learning. Activity- Differentiated Instruction • Hold small group/table discussions on portions of the article: – Stanford, B. & Reeves, S. (2008). Making it happen: Using differentiated instruction, retrofit framework and universal design for learning, Teaching Exceptional Children, 5(6), 1-9. Summary • Just as Universal Design in architecture has benefited all people with access to public buildings and products, Universal Design for Learning makes learning accessible to all by applying similar basic principles. Summary, continued • UDL takes the best practices of teaching, including differentiated instruction, and offers a framework that can help teachers plan more effectively from the start so they don’t have to “retrofit” their lessons after a problem occurs. Summary, continued • In UDL settings, teachers assess their individual learners to determine strengths, interests, and needs. This information is then used to consider multiple ways of presenting content, engaging learners, and giving responses/showing what they know. • The infusion of technology tools and collaboration increases this flexibility. Summary, continued • This module has provided a basic introduction to UDL concepts and application in the classroom. • Three additional modules in this series go into more depth to support planning and delivery of instruction to students with a wide range of learning styles – including those with significant cognitive disabilities in the adapted curriculum. Application and Extension Activities This reflective activity may help to extend information and you to think about application of principles of UDL by considering their own strengths and preferences. Application and Extension Activities, continued • Step 1: Complete the Brain systems activity at: http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystude nt/tools/main.cfm?t_id=10 here Application and Extension Activities, continued • Step 2: Take a multiple intelligences quiz (based on Howard Gardner’s work) such as the one provided at: http://www.mypersonality.info/multipleintelligences/ here Application and Extension Activities, continued • Step 3: Reflect on the findings and decide if you agree or disagree with what these activities suggest. If you agree, how might this tool be useful in designing learning for students? here Application and Extension Activities, continued • Step 4: Think about your own learning. Using the three essential qualities of Universal Design for Learning, what modes of representation, engagement, and expression have worked best for you? Think of at least one example for each quality. Focus and Reflection Questions 1. Interview someone who was working in a public building before 1990. What changes have they seen over the years? If they do not immediately respond with changes related to the Americans with Disabilities Act and universal design, you may need to ask more specific questions about how people get into the building and use the facilities within the building. Focus and Reflection Questions, continued 2. Find examples of universal design in your own environment. Consider one or more of the work, daily activity, or home environments and find examples of universal design within the environment. How do these architectural and product adaptations, that were designed to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities, benefit others? Self-Assessment • A self-assessment with response feedback is available at http://mast.ecu.edu/modules/udl_intro/quiz/. • Participants may take this assessment online to evaluate their learning about content presented in this module. Session Evaluation • A form for participants to evaluate the session is available or in the Facilitator’s Guide.