Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Learning About UDL by @CaileyRicher24 #edchat #tichat #spedchat #spedtech

Source:  UD4All wiki
This is a guest post by Cailey Richer (@CaileyRicher24).  Cailey is a student at Illinois State University.  She originally posted this on the Classroom 2.0: Help or Feedback Needed Forum.

Today, I attended a discussion in my SED 379 class. In the discussion we were supposed to talk about UDL. Here is what I said:

When I first learned about UDL freshman year of college in my SED 101 class, the first example of UDL that came to my mind was a ramp.  A ramp is a great way to provide a different way of access to individuals with disabilities.  But there is so much more to UDL.  UDL gives all individuals equal opportunities to learn.  It is not a single "one size fits all" solution. Because, realistically, one size never fits all.  Everyone learns in a completely different way from everyone else and this is especially for children with disabilities.

On the CAST website, it explains that UDL can assist teachers in creating instructional goals, methods, materials and assessments that work for every student.  There are 3 important concepts that UDL can provide.  According to the CAST website, UDL can help teachers present information and content in different ways (multiple means of reprsentation), differentiate the ways that students can express what they know (multiple ways of expression), and stimulate interest and motivation for learning (multiple means of engagement).  Besides the ones I listed, there are many more ways to provide multiple means of representation, expression, and engagement.

Source: CAST
UDL also plays a big part of being a 21st century learner.  Being in the 21st century, technology is important.  Since all students with disabilities learn differently and may need some source of technology to do so, this is where UDL and 21st century learning correlates.  Multiple means of expression could be showing a student a video on a projector in order for them to understand a concept.  Without UDL, learning efficiently would be almost impossible for students with disabilities.

READERS:  What is your opinion on UDL and in your past experiences how have you met the needs of all students?

-  Cailey

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