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Universal Design for Learning (UDL) in the Online Classroom

The quick move to online and hybrid learning has resulted in huge challenges for educators over the last few months, with many thrown into remote learning with very little time to reflect and plan, all while supporting their students. This theme explores how educators can include all students, in particular those with disabilities, in the delivery of teaching and learning online and offer rich, accessible and engaging learning experiences that build meaningful learning connections between staff and students.

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Pre-recorded Sessions

Pre-recorded Sessions

Week 1 Pre-Record 1

  1. From the trenches: a phenomenological exploration of an instructor’s journey to reflect on learner engagement through the lens of inclusion within the abrupt 'COVID pivot' of two Higher Education courses to online delivery.
    Dr Frederic Fovet, Assistant Professor, School of Education, Thompson Rivers University

Week 1 Pre-Record 2

  1. Incorporating Digital Technologies and Online Delivery into an Inclusive Curriculum.
    Gary Vear, Senior Learning Technologist, University Academy 92 Stephanie Petrou, Student Wellbeing Officer, University Academy 92

Week 1 Pre-Record 3

  1. The Design Thinking Class: experiencing the extremes to inform Universal Design
    Allen Higgins, College of Business, University College Dublin Tina Lowe, Access & Lifelong Learning Centre, University College Dublin

Tuesday 6th Apr

Tuesday 6th Apr

15:30-16:30 - Conference Orientation Session (Live and Recorded)

  1. Introductory welcome session for participants, describing how the conference format works and showcasing the platform features
    Dara Ryder, CEO, AHEAD Orla Lehane, AHEAD Trevor Boland, Dublin City University

Thursday 8th Apr

Thursday 8th Apr

15.00-16.00 - Week 1 Keynote (Live and Recorded)

  1. UDL: Connecting FET Learners, Practitioners, and the World
    Ann Heelan, UniversalDesignforLearning.ie Dr. Thomas J. Tobin, University of Wisconsin-Madison

16.00 to 16.30 Reconnection Space (Live Only)

  1. A meeting space to join for unstructured networking and chat with other conference participants. Meet new colleagues and build your inclusive community.

Friday 9th Apr

Friday 9th Apr

14:00-15:20 - Parallel 1: Workshop (Live Only)

  1. Embracing equity in a public health emergency: the role of UDL in guiding instructors as they adapt to an unprecedented reliance on online and hybrid teaching.

14:00-15:20 - Parallel 2: Themed Presentations (Live and Recorded)

  1. Easy as 1, 2, 3... Effective UDL Applications for Virtually Connecting with Your Students
    Michelle Bartlett, PhD, Faculty Scholar, North Carolina State University Dr Suzanne Ehrlich, EdD, Assistant Professor & Program Area Co-Leader, University of North Florida
  2. Universal Design for Learning at UCC: Where We've Been and Where We're Going
    Dr Brian Butler, Advisor for Inclusive Education and Centre for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning Fellow, University College Cork Dr Laura Lee, Research Manager for CIRTL, UCC
  3. Workshop activities supporting Universal Design for eLearning (UDeL) in Higher Education Institutions
    Elinor Jeanette Olaussen, Senior Advisor, Universell, Norway. Dr Håkan Eftring, Assistant Professor and Director of Studies, Lund University, Sweden. Dr Merja Saarela, Principal Lecturer and Research Group Leader, Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK), Finland.

15.30-16.30 Weekly Close and Reflection (Live Only)

  1. A facilitated dialogue on the Week 1 conference theme, UDL in the Online Classroom, and a space to discuss the issues and questions raised.
    Dr Marian McCarthy, Vice President Emerita Teaching and Learning, University College Cork Dr Vivian Rath, National Disabled Postgraduate Advisory Committee


The core funding received by AHEAD for its higher education activities is provided by the Higher Education Authority.

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This article appeared in the AHEAD website. Visit www.ahead.ie for more information