To meet the needs of the widest range of students, what should teachers consider when planning their instruction?
Page 3: Curricular Components
Now that the Sycamore Middle School team has learned about the three basic principles of UDL (i.e., representation, action and expression, and engagement), they are eager to apply them to their instruction. To do so, the teachers need to apply the UDL principles to the four main curricular components:
Learning goals • Instructional materials • Instructional methods • Assessment
This wheel-shaped graphic illustrates the relationships between UDL’s four main curricular components. At the center of the wheel is a hub labeled “Learning Goals.” It reads, “A description of what students are expected to learn.” Surrounding this hub are “Instructional materials: The media and tools used for teaching content,” “Instructional methods: The manner in which the content is taught,” and “Assessments: The methods for measuring student learning.”
By applying the UDL principles to each of these components, the teachers at Sycamore Middle School hope to meet the learning needs of all students in the general education classroom. As the illustration above depicts, learning goals are central to the UDL process. Teachers must know what they expect the students to learn before addressing the other curricular components.
David Rose describes the interconnected relationships between the four main curricular components (time: 0:49).
CAST founder; Chief Scientist,
Cognition & Learning
For Your Information
- It may not be reasonable or possible for teachers to incorporate all three of the UDL principles into every lesson plan. Rather, they are intended to guide instruction over time.
- Even when teachers apply the three principles, some students may need additional support. Consequently, teachers will sometimes have to make accommodations (e.g., allow the use of a spell checker) to meet an individual student’s needs.
Though, for the sake of clarity, the application of UDL to these components will be discussed separately on the following pages, in practice these components are interconnected (e.g., the instructional materials and methods that a teacher uses should be tied to the learning goal, which will in turn be reflected in the assessments).