Who does UDL benefit?

UDL benefits all students and ensures equal opportunities to learn and succeed.

The goal of UDL is to create learners that are: 

  • Purposeful and motivated
  • Resourceful and knowledgeable
  • Strategic and goal-directed

In other words, to create expert learners. Inclusive teaching practices like UDL aim to create greater access for all learners, recognizing that many students face barriers to learning, not only students with disabilities. For example, Concordia classrooms include students from different cultural and educational backgrounds, with a variety of language abilities, and diverse learning needs. 

Instructors implementing UDL will also benefit from this proactive design as it supports a more diverse student population and reduces the need for individualized accommodations.

The three principles of UDL

The UDL principles are based on the three-network model of learning that take into account the variability of all learners. These principles guide the design of learning environments with a deep understanding and appreciation for individual variability, noting that, in fact, the "average learner" is a myth.

By designing to the edges the cirriculum supports all students, including those that were traditionally excluded. With UDL, instructors proactively design courses that provide:

  1. Multiple means of engagement: How we engage learners to support interest, motivation, and persistence in the face of challenges.
  2. Multiple means of representation: How information is presented (i.e., audio, print, tactile, graphically, video etc); ensuring that it is accessible and presented in a variety of ways.
  3. Multiple means of action and expression: How people exhibit mastery, how they can express their achievement, and how they can really articulate well what it is they know.



Inclusive teaching practices

Classrooms are a reflection of the world in which we live and represent the diversity within.  Students often face challenges in classrooms that are designed for the "average student."

By implementing inclusive teaching practices, faculty can create learning environments in which all students feel like they belong, can learn at high levels, and can reach their true potential.

To support instructors in creating inclusive learning environments that incorporate the UDL principles, consider these five inclusive teaching practices:

More resources

  • UDL On Campus: This resource provides a brief overview of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) for postsecondary settings.
  • Novak Education resources: Provides practical tools to help you implement Universal Design for Learning.
  • ACUE inclusive teaching practices toolkit: Provides inclusive teaching practices that can be immediately put to use to benefit both faculty and their students. 
  • Brickfield - Moodle Accessibility Checker: A tool to help faculty transform their digital course materials into inclusive formats that are accessible to all learners. When enabled, the checker identifies inaccessible web content, including images, text, links, media files, tables, and layout, and generates an instant report outlining issues that need to be fixed.
  • Making Learning Inclusive and Accessible modules: This set of modules is anchored in best practices to support you in building more inclusive and accessible courses.
  • Inclusive language resource sheet: A guide to begin learning about inclusive language, from the University of Missouri, St. Louis. 
  • Disability language style guide: This style guide covers words and terms commonly used when referring to disability, developed by the National Center on Disability and Journalism at Arizona State University.

Contact ACSD

514-848-2424, ext. 3525

Meet our staff

Location & hours

Sir George Williams Campus
GM 300.00 (see map)
1550 De Maisonneuve Blvd. W.

Monday - Friday
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Mailing address
Access Centre for Students with Disabilities
1455 De Maisonneuve Blvd. W.
Room GM 300.00
Montreal, Quebec, H3G 1M8

Related office

Loyola Exam Centre
AD-130 (see map)
7141 Sherbrooke St. West

514-848-2424, ext. 4562


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