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Design for All


“Design for All” (DfA) is also called “Universal Design” or “Inclusive Design”. It describes a design process that aims to achieve accessibility, usability and experience ability for as many people as possible. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) helps to design inclusive learning environments.

Three principles form the UDL framework
  1. Provide multiple means of engagement – the WHY of learning: provide options for self-regulation, recruiting interest or sustaining effort. Strategies to keep students connected.
  2. Provide multiple means of representation – the WHAT of learning: provide options for perception, language, mathematical expressions, and comprehension.
  3. Provide multiple means of action and expression – the HOW of learning: provide students with multimodal ways to express themselves; provide options for physical action, expression, communication etc.

Teachers can use the UDL framework to design lessons that integrate inclusive strategies and tools.


a) Provide choice of homework type (read book, produce video, work on case study …) to address learners diverse learning needs, interests, and levels. 

b) Make goals and define work packages of the lesson available (i.e., checklists, bulletin/pinboards) to make different learning paths visible.

c) Differentiate level of difficulty.

d) Invite students to reflect on the learning process (comprehensibility, speed …).


a) Customize the display of information: use different media to present content (text, video) and make it accessible: provide descriptions for images; provide transcripts for videos; use text to speech functionalities; increase copy size.

b) Offer different ways to organize/visualize ideas and to support understanding: use digital graphic organizer to visualize ideas; use screencast tools to record the screen and to add messages to the learning material considering the different levels of proficiency.


a) Provide opportunities for students to demonstrate what they have learned in different ways; consider possible accessibility problems and respond to them by customising the way knowledge is presented.

Different digital tools support the UDL process – to name just a few:

Ad 1) - WHY

a) Todoist:

Provide online checklists with daily/weekly assignments or step-by-step instructions (asynchronous communication).

Proficiency level: B1 (Integrator)

b) Padlet:

Provide online bulletin boards to give an overview of the course content. (asynchronous/synchronous communication)

Proficiency level: B1 (Integrator)

c) Audience Response System (ARS):

Use ARS to ask for feedback and to check understanding.
Tool suggestions see: Student response approach (link to item “Student response approach”)

Proficiency level: B2 (Expert)

Ad 2) - WHAT

d) Read and Write for Google Chrome:

Reads a written text.

Proficiency level: Beginner

e) Voice Dream Reader:

Students can use this tool to better read or listen to handouts.

Proficiency level: Beginner

f) Popplet:

Using digital graphic organizers to brainstorm and organize information and use multimodal elements (graphics, audio) to illustrate the content.

Proficiency level: Integrator

g) Screencastify:

Digital tool to record the screen, add information/questions and share it with others; students could use the learning material whenever they want.

Proficiency level: Expert

Ad 3 – HOW

h) Voicethread:

Is a media player that offers an interactive discussion space; upload documents or pictures, record comments and add questions; teachers and students can present the content in an interactive way.

Proficiency level: Expert

i) Pictochart:

Use tools like Pictochart, which is a visual content maker, to present learnings in different ways.

Proficiency level: Integrator

UDL guidelines

The guidelines are explained by Center Director David Rose on the video: