Principles & Objectives
Committing to accessible design and inclusive teaching means being both proactive and responsive. It is the instructor's responsibility to take deliberate steps to ensure that all students feel welcomed and valued as part of their learning community. Inclusive teaching practices are helpful for all students’ learning but especially beneficial to students who are members of groups underrepresented in their fields or traditionally underserved by institutions of higher education.
You may have heard of Universal Design, a concept that originated in the field of architecture. The idea was to design products and spaces that could be used to the greatest extent possible by anyone, regardless of their age, status, or ability. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) applies principles of Universal Design to education. Three primary principles guide UDL. Instructors should provide learners with:
- Multiple means of representation
- Multiple means of engagement
- Multiple means of action and expression
The key word across all those principles is multiple. By providing multiple ways to access and engage, UDL increases the likelihood that a more diverse range of learners can succeed. Course content and activities reflect inclusive, accessible design principles and practices.
Some of the objectives that are explored in faculty development opportunities within this passport stamp are:
- Objective: The content in the course meets basic accessibility objectives.
- Objective: The instructor’s course design and pedagogy create an inclusive learning environment
- Objective: The instructor follows institutional guidelines for stating academic and institutional policies (e.g., religious accommodation, disability accommodation, information about relevant learner support resources and opportunities).
- Objective: The instructor models flexibility and, where appropriate, offers learners alternative ways to engage or meet expectations.
See the Hybrid/Online Course Development and Evaluation Rubric