UDL tutorial

More UDL resources

  • UDL guidelines from CAST
  • Guidelines handout
  • UDL critique

    The University of Virginia is using Collab as its learning management system. Learning management systems offer institutions a wide range of functionalities from embedded forums for student discussion, to gradebooks and weekly assignment tabs. UVA is able to customize Collab as are individual professors who use the platform, but their options to customize the platform are relatively limited, meaning that we can look at how well the LMS as a whole adheres to UDL principles.

    Criteria Unacceptable Needs improvement Meets criteria Justification
    Technology aligns with UDL guidelines of representation:
    Perception x Unfortunately, Collab does not come with any obvious text to speech or speech to text features. While it is impossible to embed videos and visuals, the site does not make the process obvious, leading to text heavy, disability inaccessible pages.
    Language, expression, and symbols x Collab does not have obvious built in dictionaries or glossaries for online courses to use. While videos can be used,
    the format of the LMS leads professors to creating text heavy materials.
    Comprehension x Comprehension is entirely up to the instructor. Therefore, professors can create transfer rich activities using the site or create low comprehension activities.
    Technology aligns with UDL guidelines of action and expression:
    Physical action x Collab heavily replies on points/clicking with a mouse. Individuals with physical impairments would need support in using the website
    Expression and communication x Collab has a variety of forums and discussion threads that professors can use for group work. None have obvious video features, leading to an over reliance on text for expression and communication.
    Executive function x Instructors using Collab are able to build in planning and strategy development as they desire. Collab’s feedback feature for assignments can, in theory, support student planning and strategy development.
    Website aligns with UDL guidelines of engagement
    Recruiting interest x The website is generally clean, with no ads cluttering up the screen. However, it is up to instructors through their content to build in relevance and value.
    Sustaining effort and persistence x The assignment feedback feature of Collab makes it easy for instructors to give students mastery-oriented feedback. In theory, forums and discussions could build community although those features are relatively clunky compared to other social technologies.
    Self-regulation x In theory, professors could build self-assessment and reflection into a Collab course but there are no features that directly target self-assessment and reflection or facilitating coping strategies and skills.