Skip to Main Content


Brescia University UCTL

Universal Design for Learning

until learning has no limits

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a way of thinking about teaching and learning that helps give all students an opportunity to succeed. According to CAST, Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework to improve and optimize teaching and learning for all people based on scientific insights into how humans learn. This approach offers flexibility in the ways students access material, engage with it and show what they know. It is more about equity than equality.

Please connect with our professional learning community focused on Universal Design for Learning:  UDL TEAMS

UDL. Just start.

If Universal Design seems to intimidate you, start slow.  Just start. Choose one or two easy to do strategies to begin your quest:

  • Ask open-ended questions or Socratic Questions
  • Provide a range of learning materials in different formats
  • Introduce one new tech tool
  • Implement peer tutoring or discussion within the class period
  • Co-teach
  • Vary student groupings
  • Use a wide range of assessment tools and strategies
  • Give choices
  • Use cooperative learning structures



Equality or Equity

UDL: Breakdown Barriers

UNIVERSAL DESIGN is about more than just teaching and reaching all learners. It is also about breaking down barriers in the classroom and in daily lessons. To create a powerful UDL classroom, evaluate your learning spaces and activities and look for potential challenges or obstacles for students. Then, explore ways to eliminate them.

  • Provide directions verbally and visually when possible
  • Allow students to choose other means of assessments
  • Give students seating choices, arrangements, groupings
  • Provide a variety of ways to learn the content
  • Students might need to be taught how to discuss, how to work in groups




Accessibility Tips

Accessibility Tips are available for you to help you develop course content that is accessible to ALL students.  When you take the last 7 letters off of the word, accessibility, you will have a better understanding of UDL.  ACCESS for ALL students.

UDL: +1

UNIVERSAL DESIGN FOR LEARNING isn’t new and it is not a set of standards or specific practices. It is a framework intended to encourage you to think proactively about the needs of all your learners. It is a mind-set to progress in making our campus interactions accessible to the broadest range of people, rather than to aim for perfection. (Tobin & Behling, 2018)

James Basham of the Universal Design for Learning Implementation and Research Network outlined the following instructional planning process:

Step 1: Establish clear outcomes. Always.

Step 2: Anticipate Learner needs.

Step 3: Plan measurable outcomes and assessments.

Step 4: Establish the Instructional Experience, the sequence of events.

Step 5: Establish reflection and new understandings.

Basham, J. (2019). UDL Instructional Planning Process. Retrieved from


Using the following three resources, it is the goal of UCTL to support your professional learning of UDL with the intent of providing you with resources, activities, challenges, and questions.