Normalizing Universal Design for Learning in Library Instruction

Your Name and Title: Samantha Cook, Instructional Design Librarian

Library, School, or Organization Name: University of Wyoming Libraries

Co-Presenter Name(s): Kristina Clement, Student Success Librarian

Area of the World from Which You Will Present: Laramie, WY (Mountain Standard Time)

Language in Which You Will Present: English

Target Audience(s): Academic Librarians

Short Session Description (one line): Discover simple and effective ways to make information literacy instruction in academic libraries accessible to all persons and learning styles by incorporating Universal Design for Learning (UDL) into your instructional pedagogy.

Full Session Description (as long as you would like): Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is not about learning to provide accommodations--it’s more about improving the way we teach to be inclusive for all, which prevents the need for most accommodations. With the number of persons with disabilities on the rise in the United States, from 11.9% in 2010 to 12.7% in 2017 (US Census), colleges and universities are seeing larger populations of students with disabilities (according to the PNPI report, the 2012 data shows that one out of every ten students identify as having a disability). UDL is a framework that seeks to create educational practices that are accessible to all--and not just those with disabilities. Using flexible teaching methods, technologies, activities, and pedagogies, UDL makes information accessible to different ways of learning and can alleviate the need to make most accommodations by making changes to lesson plans. Adopting this perspective is likely to revolutionize the way we teach information literacy and allow UDL to become the new normal.  This presentation will give a brief overview of the purpose of UDL in higher education and provide several steps that librarians can take to immediately adopt UDL into their instruction.

Students with Disabilities in Higher Education – PNPI. (2018). Retrieved January 10, 2019, from

Websites / URLs Associated with Your Session:

This session is a follow up to the ALA Midwinter Virtual Discussion sponsored by the ACRL Instruction Section. Please visit the following website for selected readings, a Zotero library, and a google drive folder with several UDL resources.

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