Best Practices:

Universal Course Design (UCD) is broken down into four components 1) Course Curriculum, 2) Instruction, 3) Assessment and 4) Environment. The following are the best practices for each of these UCD components. We suggest you use this list as you work to incorporate UCD into your course.

  1. Course Curriculum

    • Create Universally Designed syllabi
    • Choose texts and multimedia materials that are culturally diverse
    • Offer students a choice of texts and e-journals to read
    • Post all course materials online
    • Include a statement on the syllabus detailing what resources are available to students (disability, tutoring, counseling, etc.)

  2. Instruction

    • Administer a learning style survey at the beginning of class, adjust your instructional plan based on the results
    • Frame each class with an essential question, return to it frequently
    • Diversify your instruction every 20 minutes
    • Use multimedia to enhance your presentation
    • Make sure all presentations are universally designed

  3. Assessment

    • Offer students a choice of final assessments
    • Create rubrics for each assessment choice
    • Encourage students to do their final assessment in a medium that works for them
    • Offer extra time to everyone in the course when taking an exam
    • Use e-portfolios to evaluate student work throughout the semester

  4. Environment

    • Make sure that the classroom is accessible
    • Ask your students if they can hear and see your presentations
    • If using online learning, make sure that you use UCD for increased accessibility
    • Provide an environment that is respectful of cultural diversity
    • Use technology to enhance the learning experience of all students