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Post-Secondary Voices & Universal Design for Learning

Points to consider for curricula design that makes learning accessible to the widest possible range of learners through multiple means of:

  • Is it likely that students will have difficulties accessing course materials or participating in any essential activities related to this class?
  • Are there areas of confusion or inconsistency among course objectives, your own expectations and/or how the course is presented?
  • Does the course offer students multi-modal access to materials & ways of demonstrating knowledge in a way that suits their abilities?
  • Are there barriers to students receiving or understanding information & resources they need?
  • Will students feel respected, welcome to express their thoughts & able to explore new ideas in this course?
  • If there are physical challenges or obstacles to participating in this course, can they be reduced or avoided?
  • Will students will find any of the materials or activities in this course to be inappropriate or unsuitable?

A teacher's perspective - "I expect students to electronically distribute information that they are going to present beforehand. That works well for everyone, but can be especially beneficial for someone who is deaf or hard of hearing. This is not doing anything different for students with disabilities. In fact, everyone benefits from a common strategy".

A student perspective - "At the beginning I wanted to tell every teacher and then I found that teachers do kind of look at you different and then I thought well maybe it is not the best thing to tell teachers right out front. I just kind of wanted to try it on my own."

Re-imaging communication equity in all courses:

  • Current educational practices
  • Values, beliefs & biases
  • Social relationships, political & cultural landscape
  • Ongoing reflection
  • Build relationships between students, teachers & administrators
  • Identify what is unique to the situation
  • Promote practices to meet students’ needs
  • Support for teachers


CAST, a nonprofit education research and development organization that works to expand learning opportunities for all individuals through Universal Design for Learning.

PowerPoint Presentation from PCAS "Post-Secondary voices & universal design for learning"