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Improving access to learning

Universal design in education makes learning accessible for more students.
Students seated at desks in a classroom, concentrate on completing their exam papers while a teacher stands nearby.
© QUT 2019. All rights reserved. CRICOS No. 00213J

Applying universal design principles in education makes learning more accessible for more students.

The concept of universal design has also been applied in education. One approach is known as Universal Design for Learning (or UDL) and another approach is differentiation. Educators can use UDL and/or differentiation as frameworks to guide lesson planning, to improve teaching impact, and to design fair assessments of student learning.

Just like the inclusive playground in Surry, if adopted proactively at the planning stage to maximise access, adopting universal design principles can help to reduce the need for teachers to make retrospective adjustments. This leaves teachers with more time to engage in consultation and collaboration, benefiting both students and teachers.

In the area of assessment, for example, ensuring assessment tasks, instructions and marking criteria are described using age-appropriate vocabulary and short, simple sentences in a clear, logical sequence reduces confusion and requests for clarification.

Read about it

Our post on the EduResearch Matters blog explains how to design assessment tasks and task sheets that allow more students to participate.

Talk about it

How might all students benefit from the use of universal design principles in education? Share one benefit in the discussion before commenting on a post made by one of your fellow learners.
© QUT 2019. All rights reserved. CRICOS No. 00213J
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