This 1:42 recording is a brief introduction to the UDL in 15 Minutes podcast series. It explains how UDL influences the design of this podcast and accompanying products and reminds listeners to have their UDL Guidelines on hand while listening to the podcast.
We have 2 informative Podcast series.
Our UDL in 15 Minutes – The Podcast is our original podcast where educators and UDL leaders share their experiences and thoughts on implementing and using UDL. This Podcast series can be found below on this page.
Our UDL Research in 15 Minutes – The Podcast is our newer Podcast where researchers share their findings about the implementation, the impact, and their investigations of the Universal Design for Learning framework.
UDL in 15 Minutes – The Podcast
Check here to find all the episodes sorted by grade level and topic.
Loui talks with Kim Babeu of Toltecalli High School in Tucson, AZ about her use of UDL to provide her learners more choice in preparing for, taking, and grading their anatomy assessments. Kim has taught for 38 years and was the 2005 Arizona Teacher of the Year, but has watched her students become more engaged since embedding more choice.
Shelbi Fortner from Frankfort High School in Frankfort, Indiana talks about the downside of humidity, her revelation about Universal Design for Learning, and how she used the UDL framework to redesign her honors biology assessment.
Jessie Sherman is a 2nd grade teacher at City Neighbors Charter School in Baltimore, MD. Project based learning and arts integration are integral to the school's design. Through the use of the UDL framework, Jessie was able to make a project about reptiles even more accessible to her learners.
Laura Taylor has been teaching Kindergarten for 26 years in the Groten-Dunstable Regional School District in Massachusetts. When she first learned about UDL, she was skeptical that it was anything different than good teaching. Once she dug in, though, she realized she could reach her students in ways she never had before.
Rachel Barillari, an 8th grade humanities teacher from Baltimore, Maryland, shares how UDL shaped her poetry unit, how she was able to engage 100% of her wonderfully diverse class, and how every student authored, visually represented, and performed their own poetry.
Liz Hartmann, a former K-12 teacher specializing in Deaf-blindness and intellectual disabilities, now teaches about UDL at Lasell College and the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Hear how her graduate students learned how to take more risks in their own learning as they applied the UDL framework and investigated their own journeys toward becoming expert learners.
This one-minute announcement shares where you can find a discussion guide for past and future UDL in 15 Minutes episodes. We will return to the regular format on Wednesday, January 16, 2019. Happy New Year!
Dakota Hudelson, a 7th grade writing and literacy lab teacher at Northside Middle School in Columbus, Indiana, shared several stories of how UDL has impacted his teaching and how he sees UDL as a framework that upholds social justice by establishing a way to equalize the classroom so all students can learn.
Ben Kelly, a grade 6-12 STEM teacher at Caledonia Regional High School in the Anglophone East School District, New Brunswick, Canada shares what he and his team of teacher-researchers learned about UDL when they conducted an action research study which included Minecraft as a learning tool.
Jana Nicol, a 3rd grade teacher at Island View School in St. John, New Brunswick Canada and the website author of www.theudlproject.com shares how she began her UDL journey with the design of her environment and how she supports her students to understand the goals of the day.
Monica Watson-Bedard, a Grade 7 teacher at Millidgeville North School in New Brunswick, Canada, shares her lessons after conducting action research to discover how choice affects student engagement in assessments. Her take-aways have a surprise tucked into them!
Dan’s 26 years as an elementary school teacher have taught him a lot, but one of his biggest lessons was when he learned to ask, “Why not?” Hear how combining that lesson with UDL has led him to create an incredibly flexible, open, and non-threatening math classroom.
Kim Babeu introduces us to a system she uses called SPORT which encompasses both behavior and academic supports. It has lowered barriers for her anatomy and physics students so successfully at Toltecalli High School, in Tucson, AZ that their grades have gone way up. During our conversation, Kim and I explore how the system overlaps with UDL. The associated blog dives into the intentional use of the UDL framework.
Hear how Adria Gold, an English Language Arts teacher from Prettyboy Elementary in Baltimore, Maryland responds to her variable learners through chunking her materials. In addition, she shares how she breaks down her expectations so all of her learners know where to start and how to participate in the lesson.
Melissa discovered UDL as a 7th grade English teacher but recently transitioned to become a district resource teacher who helps other teachers learn about and implement UDL. Hear how she started weaving UDL into her classroom using small steps and how she uses that same model as she brings UDL to others. She also shares a UDL tool she redesigned to fit the needs of her adult learners.
This special edition of UDL in 15 Minutes was recorded in front of a live studio audience at the UDL-IRN Summit on March 28, 2019. Camille is a Learning Coach at Sunflower Elementary School in Lawrence, Kansas and during this episode, she shares how she and the fourth grade teachers devised a system to help their learners show what they know in English Language Arts through their use of the UDL principle of Action and Expression. Students gained new levels of ownership, participation, and expression by brainstorming, planning, designing, and creating their creations to demonstrate their knowledge of main idea and detail.
Karlene Warns, a 27-year teaching veteran, shares how she’s helped her kindergartners gain the self-regulation skills necessary to support their executive functioning capabilities. During the podcast, we address that push and pull felt by so many teachers – when to spend time on skills that feel more like behavior and when to dive into academics. Karlene shares what’s been successful for her.
Hear how Justin Freedman, an assistant professor at Rowan University, provides his pre-service teachers with a 365-degree relationship with UDL. Not only do they learn about it and observe other lessons and learning environments implementing UDL, they experience a learning environment designed by Justin using UDL. Justin also shares how and why he become a professor and his research accommodations at the college level.
Special educator Rebecca Chappell shares how she and her English Language Arts colleague used Universal Design for Learning to design how they would integrate Quizlet and other methods and materials to ensure all of their learners improved their understanding and application of some challenging vocabulary terms.
It’s July which means summer holiday in most of North America. And even though UDL in 15 Minutes is taking a production break, I’ve made a table of past episodes to make it easy for listeners to find the episode they want to hear for their first time or second, third, or fourth. Happy listening!
Special educator Rebecca Chappell shares how she designed choice into the AIMSweb assessment through UDL. By providing her learners choice, they are more engaged with their writing and by clarifying the goal, they are finding their own motivation.
Karen Keener and Jordan Landis co-teach 8th grade language arts classes together at Crestview Middle School in Ohio. Here, they share how their respect for one another, their use of the UDL framework, their expectations for their students, and their mindset around the ownership of all learners have set them up to produce engaging lessons where all learners gain the skills of expert learners.
Carrie Preston shares a unit she designed for her 12th grade seniors that kept them engaged at the end of the year and how amazed she was with the products they produced, all because she designed the unit using the UDL framework…and got out of their way.
This episode brings together all past episodes’ blog posts into a table. You can choose the blogs you’d like to read based on the linked descriptions provided.
Kate Stanley, a multi-age 3rd and 4th grade teacher from Madison, New Hampshire has been in the classroom for 21 years and firmly believes all learners can and should have more agency in their learning and UDL helps her provide more of it. She shares how she gets her learners started at the beginning of the year as well as the initial steps she took.
Tracy Pendred and Kimberly Spears of City Neighbors Charter School, a public school in Baltimore, MD, share how their formal mentor/mentee relationship grew into a friendship and how that relationship supports their implementation of UDL.
Beth Fornauf and her colleagues at the University of New Hampshire not only teach their graduate students about the UDL framework and ask them to use it to design their rural K-12 learning environments and lessons, they use the framework to improve their Teacher Residency for Rural Education Program through a barrier analysis.
Not every educator works on a staff or even with a team who is focused on Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Shannon’s school is very committed to the academic and social-emotional growth of their students. This helps establish an environment where Shannon’s ideas, which are driven by UDL, to flourish. She and her co-teacher focus on knowing the goal and lowering every barrier possible for their 5th graders.
Diana-Grace Morris, Bonni Ramage, and Catherine Wong are all educators from Wainuiomata, New Zealand who share stories of how teachers at Konini Primary School are embracing UDL to investigate how they can lower barriers for learners and then expanding those ideas to encompass even more learners.
This week’s episode provides an updated easy-to-read table organizing all of the UDL in 15 Minute episodes to date.
Melanie Acevedo shares how she helps teachers implement UDL via her role as a digital literacy teacher and a personalized learning coach.
High school teacher Amanda Hughes emphasizes the need to teach executive function skills to high school students and shares how she weaves the UDL guideline of Executive Function into her classroom every day.
Laura Christie, an English Language Arts teacher from Fishers, Indiana shares how the voices of her students, including those who are high ability, students with IEPs, and students with 504’s, helped her see how all students can benefit from options. And many times, it’s the same options.
7th grade science teacher Christina Khatri, from Ocean View Junior High School in Oxnard, CA, shares how her students have blossomed into motivated and persistent learners through her use of UDL for planning and teaching.
When Ian Wilkins began to adopt Universal Design for Learning into his learning environment, he began to investigate how grades were moving his students away from being expert learners. Hear how this high school English Language Arts teacher redesigned his syllabus, created a rubric, and now guides his students toward a stronger growth mindset.
Principal Sara Soria shares her rich professional and personal journey to emphasize the importance of using art as a means of learning and expression and how she sees the arts as a tool to implement UDL.
Benefit from Kelley’s knowledge about UDL and her experience of planning an online environment using the framework. She recommends starting small and gives some specific examples of where she got started.
Robin, who is newer to UDL, shares her thoughts on how she’s going to weave UDL into her online enrichment lessons to enhance engagement and access during this time of social distancing.
High school teacher Dan Marsh has been teaching in a brick and mortar setting for 16 years, but he’s also taught online for 10 years. During this episode, he shares his ideas about shifting his brick and mortar lessons online and how he’s supporting his students during that shift.
Megan and Lisa talk about some of the resources and tips they are providing to parents and general educators as everyone moves to educating all students at home.
This episode provides an updated easy-to-read table that organizes all of the UDL in 15 Minutes episodes by subject and grade. Find the podcast topic that connects with you most, then try out a couple of others!
Hear how Lizzie and her colleagues used their UDL mindset to think through the barriers their students would face during emergency distance learning and how they are using the UDL framework to plan for their students’ return.
Since the beginning, Elish Sheridan and her colleagues have used a TeachMeet format to share their effective uses of the UDL framework when planning and delivering their face-to-face and current distance learning lessons. They’ve continued that sharing style during their school’s closure. Elish shares what her colleagues have discovered during this podcast and via a one-page overview.
Brenny Kummer, a former middle and high school teacher, is a technology coordinator for Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation. In this podcast, she shares how BCSC had already ingrained UDL into its technology supports, how she and her colleagues have supported teachers during emergency online learning, and a specific example of supporting occupational therapists.
Catherine chose to learn about UDL on her own, but is now excited to share how it has positively affected her students in both face-to-face and online settings. She shares some of the strategies she’s found helpful as well as next steps for her and her colleagues.
This 1 minute 30 second announcement shares where you can find a discussion guide for past and future UDL in 15 Minute episodes and includes prompts about the shift so many made to online learning. Get ready for another episode next week!
Recorded live during the UDL-IRN 2020 Summit On Demand on June 4, 2020, Cherie Smith describes the benefits of the practice profile and how one district is using practice profiles to articulate what it looks like when students are given clear lesson goals.
Lauren’s story shows how UDL shifted her mindset to create a space where learners are given the opportunity, time, and information to show what they really know.
There’s a new UDL Podcast coming to town! The same host with the same passion for UDL bringing you new information from a new angle. Researchers and I will have interesting conversations about their work and how that work connects to the classroom. The first guest will knock your socks off, so stay tuned via Twitter or my website.
Brandy and Lauren combined their skills to create a lasting unit on research for Lauren’s freshman English class. While they used hyper docs as the main tool, the design of their environment supported the self-regulation, comprehension, and executive functioning of their students.
High School teacher Susanne Geise shares how her students helped develop her very successful project on ethos, pathos, and logos using UDL and the format of the famous TV show, Shark Tank.
Selena Andrade Gonzalez is a Resource Specialist at a bi-lingual and high need school in Salinas, CA. She shares the strategies she’s used to introduce UDL to general education and how UDL led her to use physical and verbal signs to support her learners during distance learning.
Daphne Hereford is a high school Visual Communication Design teacher which means students create products using really cool digital tools. UDL helps Daphne focus on what the students need to learn prior to choosing the tools they will use which leads to highly engaging lessons.
6th Grade World Cultures teacher Carla-Ann Brown shares how she uses backwards planning and UDL to design units that are inclusive as well as culturally sustaining.
Blake Beckett, a 6th grade ELA teacher shares how she uses the UDL framework to empower her learners.
Stephanie Craig shares how she has grown with UDL across her roles as elementary school teacher, UDL coach, researcher, and assistant professor at Marietta College teaching pre-service teachers.
Jess Lombardi shares how she empowers her students to understand their own learning needs, track their growth, and lead their own conferences.
Carolee Clyne of BCcampus in British Columbia shares her passion for Open Education Resources and how those interconnect with UDL. A bonus: she shares an excellent resource on how to get started with OER.
Lizzie Fortin goes beyond modeling UDL during her instructional coaching, she embodies it. Hear how she helped establish community and minimize threats so her colleagues could work to create equitable learning environments.
Andretesha Fitzgerald shares how a unit on letter writing empowered her students then and continues to empower her students now.
The UDL Reporting Criteria tool was created by a mix of researchers and school-based administrators interested in helping others clearly talk about UDL in their journal articles. The tool, though, has shown to be flexible and useful in the learning environment. Though this podcast was originally recorded for UDL Research in 15 Minutes, the topic is a must share for UDL in 15 Minutes!
Alaa Zaza shares how teachers and schools are supporting all children, including children with disabilities, and how the adults work to provide all children with psychosocial and academic supports in the midst of the Syrian tragedy.
Emily Art shares how her department at Relay Graduate School of Education does more than teach about UDL, they are embodying it in their instruction. She shares their ah-ha’s and growth points.
Art and Design teacher Callie Mulcahy shares how UDL is the perfect fit as she guides her students toward the art standards of creating, responding, presenting, and connecting.
Hear about Timmary’s AP Art History course that welcomes all learners, holds high expectations, and is held in a community-based museum. It’s all made possible through her application of UDL.
Yacine Hakmi and Ashraf Meguellati from Algeria walk us through the successful design they use at the STEM Teacher Training program to help teachers become excited about and apply UDL in their classrooms.
What co-teaching, staff support, and transformative teaching led by UDL looks like in their New South Wales, Australia school.
Rene shares how he brought UDL into his high school in Houston, TX when he was the principal and how the framework continued to influence his leadership as he moved through other districts and positions. BONUS: He shares a crosswalk of the intentional outcomes of UDL, PBIS, and International Baccalaureate used at his high school.
Katie Moder, the Director of Pupil Services for Fond du Lac Schools in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin shares how their district began, planned for, and continues to support the implementation of UDL across their 14 schools.
Continuing the UDL district implementation series with Fond du Lac Schools, Shannon Schultz offers a deep dive into their UDL Readiness Rubric.
Gina shares a lesson she taught in May of 2020 at the height of COVID lockdown. It reconnected her students with the great outdoors, supported their social emotional learning, and maintained their academic rigor all while using the digital learning environment. It was all planned using the UDL framework.
Middle school reading teacher Kim Potter shares the curriculum they are required to use, how that curriculum limits choice, and how she found a way to provide choice via UDL to a reluctant reader and his subsequent increase in confidence, progress monitoring scores, and his love for sharing the tool with other students.
Kim Potter and Shana Montgomery use a specific lesson and the fabulous outcomes all of Kim’s students experienced to share how their virtual teacher/coach relationship works.
Juan Gallardo was a really successful teacher. His students did well in his courses and he had the data to back it up. So, why would he ever want to add UDL into his thinking and planning? Juan shares his journey from reluctance to love during this episode of UDL in 15 Minutes.
Donzell Lewis shares his own journey toward equity and access, how he came to UDL, and how those three pieces guide his work as a theatre educator who collaborates with others on a yearly STEAM project at Walgrove Elementary.
Jarod McGuffey, a 21st Century teacher in Fraser, Michigan, shares how he used his knowledge of the UDL mindset, his gift of listening, and knowledge from a fellowship to create Trusted Voices, a nonpartisan advocacy group of educators who establish partnerships with legislators to ensure vetted information is shared to inform policy. Hear more about his journey into this work, how Trusted Voices has grown, and tips of what to do if you love the idea but you don’t live in Michigan.
Carrie Wozniak shares how Fraser Public School’s UDL implementation is guided by their Strategic Plan and their specific Portrait of a Graduate plan.
Continuing the series about UDL implementation in Fraser Public Schools, Kelly Zombo shares details and a classroom story about her role as a 21st Century Teacher and Coach and how she supports Fraser’s UDL focus.
Principal Keith Tonn of Eisenhower Elementary share his school’s journey with UDL as part of the Fraser Public Schools Implementation Series.
Sue Hardin, a veteran educator of over 30 years, lends her voice to the Fraser Public School series. Sue has been a partner with Fraser since the beginning of their journey. She shares her insights about planning for variability, systems change, and a new tool called the UDL School Implementation and Certification Criteria.
Tara Courchaine of CAST talks about two programs that directly support classroom educators: The Accessible Educational Materials Center (the AEM Center) and the Center on Inclusive Technology & Education Systems (CITES).
This episode shares how kindergarten teacher Melanie Smith used the UDL framework to rework her unit in the moment to bridge the social-emotional gap her students were experiencing so they could access the academic content.
This episode kicks off a special series about UDL in Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation in Columbus, Indiana. During this episode, George Van Horn, their Director of Special Education, offers the history of how they got started with UDL and the supports they put in place for themselves along the way.
The role of UDL Coordinator has matured over the past 14 years in Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation and Rhonda Laswell and Tina Greene have helped shape that role. During this episode, they describe what changes have occurred over time as well as the resources and supports so BCSC’s teachers can become more invested in designing UDL-aligned lessons and environments.
Betty Lou Rowe shares the work she and UDL coordinators at Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation are doing to truly and fully include all learners. Hear about a tool they created that communicates who as student is, strengths, and how to support that student from day 1.
As principal of Northside Middle School in Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation, Evan uses his leadership to guide his staff to include all students in the general education setting, including students with significant disabilities.
Current principal Kaity Day and former principal Brett Boezeman share how Schmitt Elementary’s inclusion of students with significant disabilities in general education settings has grown over the years through the implementation of UDL.
The Inclusionary Practices Project in the state of Washington has had a statewide impact that every educator needs to hear about. This is the first podcast in a series that shares how these educators have improved inclusive practices across the state and it all started during covid lockdown!
Jenny Parker, the regional administrator for special programs and professional development with ESD 113 in the state of Washington brings us the overarching ideas that can help teachers start with UDL: replicating the practice of others who are more experienced, co-planning, and self-reflection using video recording.
Gahlya and Liza share how Ocean Beach School District has used administrative PLCs to look at LRE data and student report data on their sense of belonging, make decisions, and affect significant change in their schools around inclusion and instruction.
We know that choice is important for all learners, so when building leaders embed choice in building PD, engagement goes up! Ann and Victoria share how they wove in choice and authentic learning and the incredible outcomes staff achieved at Blue Heron Middle School.
Lindsay Hicks Frazier, an inclusionary practice project lead who works through ESD 101, shares how Valley District’s leadership aligned around inclusive practices and how their professional development includes everyone, from teachers to bus drivers.
The Highland School District began their journey with UDL in 2019. In just three years, they’ve made measurable strides by adopting the 1% change concept. Small changes over time lead to big growth. Kathleen Lenihan and Courtney Sund share the steps they’ve taken during this journey.
Finding the time and energy to get going with UDL (and to keep going) takes focus. Kelley Correio from ESD 123 and Laurie Sarver from Kennewick School District in Washington share an honest story of how they’ve put theory into practice to move the idea of UDL into practice across the district.
Janelle Bersch, Emily Wilgus, and Heidi Schroeder share how they’re using UDL to create classrooms where all students have access to what they need. Period.
You know you’ve got a strong design when other districts want to visit and learn from you. Janelle, Heidi, and Emily share some #UDL-driven student-specific stories in Part 2 of their podcast about Castlerock Early Childhood Learning Center in Wenatchee School District.
The ultimate UDL question is “what does UDL look like?” Loui shares how her new tool, The UDL Gears, helps UDL users in all fields and around the world shift that question to, “What are the consistencies of UDL application?” In this episode, guest host Dakota Hudelson (from episode 8) is asking the questions and Loui is the guest!
This episode continues our journey with the Inclusionary Practices Project in Washington. Sara Lucero, the principal of Olympic Park Elementary School, shares the steps she took to shift away from self-contained environments to inclusive classrooms and how UDL influenced that shift. Cassie Stevens shares how the project supported Sara’s vision and actions.
Sara Lucero and Cassie Stevens return for part 2 of their story about how inclusion became a central part of Olympic View Elementary School.
Mary Waldron and Michaela Clancy of Washington share how equity work and MTSS were Clover Park School District’s springboard into UDL.
Brandon shares how he used his Tell me about UDL bulletin board to empower his learners to learn about UDL and become strong self-advocates.
Cindy Malone of Kansas Infinitec shares how a statewide system of UDL Professional Learning Communities and coaching have shifted technology use across Kansas.
In this episode, Loui Lord Nelson interviews Nicole Glynn and Nicole Peters about their experiences with UDL and their facilitation of the Kansas Interstate book study. They discuss their journey with UDL, the design of the book studies, and the activities they provided for high-level thinking during the discussions. They also talk about the professional development standards they incorporated into the book studies and their plans for future book studies.
Jeremy Miller, the principal of Pike Valley Junior/Senior High School, and Stephanie Jensen, a Resource Teacher at the same school, discuss their school’s journey with Universal Design for Learning (UDL). They highlight the importance of both instructional and technical leadership skills in implementing UDL effectively. Jeremy and Stephanie share how they have created structures and provided support to help their staff embrace UDL. They also discuss the integration of UDL with other statewide requirements and their plans for the future.
Kyle Carlin and Andrea Wichers from the West Central Kansas Special Education Cooperative discuss how they have implemented a UDL-aligned flexible digital tool, Read and Write, and how it has improved students’ engagement and expression.
Shannon Costley and Megan Babb discuss how they have used a combination of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), shared unit planning, and a focus on Power Standards to guide their middle school learners back to the face-to-face classroom after the pandemic shutdown.
Kade Friedman, an adjunct professor at New York University, shares their journey in education and how they use UDL to create inclusive learning spaces for adults. They discuss the importance of using UDL not only in teaching students, but also in designing courses and facilitating meetings. Kade emphasizes the value of sharing power with students and colleagues, providing choices and options, and acknowledging and addressing their emotional needs. They also highlight the benefits of using collective note-taking and assigning roles in meetings and classrooms. Kade encourages educators to consider affinity groups and honor diverse cultures and languages in their teaching and interactions.
Doug Smith, an adapted physical education specialist, discusses his journey with Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and how he applies it in his work. During our conversation, he explains that adapted physical education is required by law for students who have difficulty accessing the physical education curriculum. Doug emphasizes the importance of creating an engaging environment, modifying the physical space, and establishing a predictable schedule to support all learners. He also shares his three big E’s as a way he’s introduced UDL to his colleagues.
Beth Stark and Jérémie Rostan, the co-creators of the AI tool LUDIA, share how educators can use the process of “tell, tinker, tweak, and transfer” to enhance their journey with Universal Design for Learning. We dispel common myths about AI and listeners will walk away with clear next steps to use LUDIA as part of their toolbox.
Gayle Hines, principal at Matoaca Middle School in Richmond, Virginia, shares how she prepares her staff to learn about UDL and the strategies she uses to make UDL PD effective and enticing to her staff.
Co-teachers Kyanne Obrock and Carrie McSwain share how they saw a significant increase in student effort and motivation when they started designing lessons that shifted from planning for individual students to planning for learner variability. They created a learning environment where students worked individually, in groups, and checked-in at prescribed time so they could receive individualized feedback.
Kelly shares her experience of guiding students to create “Brain Stories”, which help them understand their own learning needs and the needs of others. She also shares the benefits and challenges of co-creating rubrics with her students, ensuring inclusivity and accountability in the learning process.