Universal Design

A scientifically valid framework for guiding educational practice that:
(A) provides flexibility in the ways information is presented, in the ways students respond or demonstrate knowledge and skills, and in the ways students are engaged; and
(B) reduces barriers in instruction, provides appropriate accommodations, supports, and; challenges,and maintains high achievement expectations for all students, including students with disabilities and students who are limited English proficient.
(Definition of UDL included in the Higher Education Opportunity Act 2008)

The Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) has identified three primary networks and the roles they play in learning.


Universal Design for Learning Three Principles of Learning

Multiple Means of Representation

Multiple Means of Action & Expression

Multiple Means of Engagement

• Perception

• Language, Expression, and Symbols

• Comprehension

• Physical Action

• Expression and Communication

• Recruiting Interest

• Sustaining Effort and

• Persistence

• Self-Regulation


Key Components

• Universal Design for Learning (UDL) refers to the process of making course concepts and skills attainable to a greater number of students, regardless of their differing learning styles, physical, sensory organizational and linguistic abilities.
• Rather than the “one-size fits-all” approach, UDL stresses flexible delivery of content, assignment, and activities. 
• Designed from the beginning to be accessible and valid for the widest range of students
• UDL allows the learning process to be more accessible without singling out students with disabilities. Not all of our lowest performing students are on an IEP. Using the principles of UDL helps all students. 
• Provide optimal standard assessment conditions


General Resources for Universal Design for Learning









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Last updated on June 20, 2022