2.1: Applying UDL in the Design Phase

Design phase from UDL flow diagram.”

Including UDL elements as the first step in curriculum, course and/or program development is ideal. Think about the UD example offered in Module 1 – Introduction and Overview of UDL: retrofitting accessibility and inclusion takes more work, time and effort (e.g., removing existing stairs to replace it with a ramp takes time, additional funds and effort). Instead, we can consider the needs of our learners, and ourselves as educators, and design our course with inclusion, equity, diversity, and access in mind.

Things to Consider

When thinking about your course or curriculum design, or re-design, consider:
  • Designing curricular materials that are concise, accessible and explicit
  • Ensuring learning expectations which include:
    • Learning outcomes and/or learning goals
    • A plan for learning with clear due dates, if required
    • Course/program/learning environment navigation instructions
    • Detailed assignment outlines and/or learning activity instructions
  • Creating online learning environments that have:
    • Intuitive layouts
    • Access to key content, course documents, policies and processes in a variety of locations
    • Communication options
    • Tools to support accessibility
  • Incorporating a variety of assessment methods and/or offering options for learners to demonstrate their knowledge
  • Including space for easy retrieval of grades and/or feedback
  • Reflecting on the appropriate cognitive load based on learning outcomes and goals
  • Selecting technology that best supports learning outcomes/goals, learning activities and assessments

The following video, UDL, Technology and Materials [1:18] by UDL on Campus (2015), quickly touches on the use of technology when implementing UDL in the higher education learning environment.

What Educators Say

In UDL at Mohawk College [2:43], Tara Dinyer, Professor in the Health, Wellness and Fitness Program, describes her UDL implementation process and provides examples of some of the UDL elements she has embedded into her courses.

Activity 2: Test Your Knoweldge

Now that you’re familiar with UDL implementation in the design phase, let’s test your knowledge! Link the UDL practice to the correct checkpoint(s) in the following 5 question quiz. To complete the quiz, choose the correct response, click the “check” button to check your answer, then use the blue arrow to advance to the next question. Repeat until all 5 questions are complete.

This activity is untimed, you may have as many attempts as you would like and your scores and/or attempts are not tracked.


Mohawk College Official. (2019, Jan 25). UDL at Mohawk College – Tara Dinyer [Video]. YouTube. https://youtu.be/QmqTWP57UUk

UDL on Campus. (2015, Oct 7). UDL, Technology and Materials [Video]. YouTube. https://youtu.be/Z777kK8lHDs