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National Center on Secondary Education and Transition: Creating opportunities for youth with disabilities to achieve successful futures.

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A Glimpse at Current Teaching Practices with Preliminary Survey Results (2001)
This CAST report by Richard Jackson, Kevin Koziol, and Lisa Rudowitz summarizes contemporary American movements in teaching practices, and discusses how educators are addressing the needs of diverse learners in the areas of materials, instruction, and assessment. The report includes results of a preliminary study of teachers’ perspectives on ways of meeting the needs of a variety of learners.

Equal Access: Universal Design of Instruction (2013)
The universal design of instruction (UDI) is gaining increased attention and application by educational researchers and practitioners at K-12 and postsecondary levels. UDI means that, rather than designing for the average student, you design instruction for students who potentially have broad ranges with respect to ability, disability, age, reading level, learning style, native language, race, ethnicity, and other characteristics. UDI can be applied to all aspects of instruction, including class climate, interaction, physical environments and products, delivery methods, information resources and technology, feedback, and assessment. UDI can be discussed as a goal, process, or set of practices.

Everybody Learns, Everybody Works: Using Universal Design for Learning in Workforce Development Programs (2012)
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is an educational model for creating general curriculums that are accessible to all learners, regardless of learning style. This information brief is for professionals working directly with youth in workforce development programs. It explains the principles of UDL and how these principles can be used in work experiences and training settings to more effectively and efficiently engage all youth, including youth with disabilities. By incorporating UDL into workforce development programs, youth service professionals can use evidence-based practices to support youth as they prepare to transition from education to the workplace.

Principles and Characteristics of Inclusive Assessment and Accountability Systems (Synthesis Report 40) (2001)
This report, produced by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO), presents six core principles of inclusive assessment and accountability systems, with a brief rationale and specific characteristics for each principle. Based on a decade of research on assessment and accountability systems, and on reviews and comments from multiple stakeholders who share a commitment to improving outcomes for all students.

Think College LEARN Module: Universal Design for Learning
Think College LEARN provides self-paced modules using multimedia tools such as videos, publications, interactive learning activities and podcasts to share information on topics related to postsecondary education for students with intellectual disabilities.

Universal Design for Learning: Implications and Applications in UT Knoxville FUTURE Program (2012)
This is a “Think College! Insight” brief on the University of Tennessee’s experiences in using Universal Design for Learning (UDL) to increase access to higher education for diverse learners, including students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD). It provides an overview of UDL, discusses how it is supported in the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008, and shares strategies for using UDL in college programs for students with ID/DD.

Universal Design for Learning: Strategies Principals Can Employ in Their Schools (2013)
This NASSP research brief, co-written by the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth) and featuring NCWD/Youth research, recommends using the inclusive learning strategy known as universal design for learning (UDL) to reach a broader diversity of students. The brief details the UDL model, recommendations to assist all students, and additional strategies that can benefit students with disabilities. Available in pdf (1.03 MB, 6 pp).

Universal Design of Instruction (UDI): Definition, Principles, Guidelines, and Examples (2012)
Precollege and college students come from a variety of ethnic and racial backgrounds. For some, English is not their first language. Also represented in most classes are students with a diversity of ages and learning styles, including visual and auditory. In addition, increasing numbers of students with disabilities are included in regular precollege and postsecondary courses. Their disabilities include blindness, low vision, hearing impairments, mobility impairments, learning disabilities, and health impairments. Students are in school to learn and instructors share this goal. How can educators design instruction to maximize the learning of all students? The field of universal design (UD) can provide a starting point for developing a framework for instruction. You can apply this body of knowledge to create courses that ensure lectures, discussions, visual aids, videos, printed materials, labs, and fieldwork are accessible to all students.

Universally Designed Assessments
This Web resource from NCEO describes the benefits of developing and using universally designed assessments that are valid and accessible for the widest possible range of students, including students with disabilities and English language learners. A benefit of using universally designed assessments is that they result in less frequent, or more effective, use of accommodations. This resource includes a series of frequently asked questions and links to online resources, including research centers and articles.

Web Accessibility Initiative, World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)
This international partnership includes the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, the European Commission's Information Society Technologies Programme, Canada's Assistive Device Industry Office, and private sector businesses. This initiative works to make the Web accessible through technology, guidelines, tools, education, outreach, research, and development. Web Accessibility Guidelines are available on the site.

Print Products

Coyne, M. D., Kame’enui, E. J., & Carnine, D. W. (2010). Effective teaching strategies that accommodate diverse learners (4th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
This book discusses the teaching, curricula, and instruction needed to meet the needs of diverse learners and help ensure their success in the classroom. The authors offer a set of instructional and curricular design principles to meet diverse needs. They also recommend specific approaches for teaching reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies.

Web Sites

Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST)
CAST is a nonprofit organization that focuses on using technology to improve the lives of people with and without disabilities through a variety of methods, including research, advocacy, and product development. Join the National UDL Consortium, download Interfaces newsletter, read about information to help teachers apply UDL in the classroom in the Teaching Every Student (TES) section of the Web site, and more.

CAST UDL Exchange
CAST UDL Exchange is a place to browse and build resources, lessons, and collections. Users can use and share these materials to support instruction guided by the UDL principles.

National Center on Universal Design for Learning
Founded in 2009, the National UDL Center supports the effective implementation of UDL by connecting stakeholders in the field and providing resources and information.

Trace Research and Development Center
The Trace Center is funded primarily by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) and is housed in the rehabilitation engineering program at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. The center’s mission is “to prevent the barriers and capitalize on the opportunities presented by current and emerging information and telecommunication technologies, in order to create a world that is as accessible and usable as possible for as many people as possible.”

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This page was last updated on November 29, 2017.