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Intersection of Accessibility and Accommodations

Although UDL is designed to support a broad range of diverse learning needs, it does not necessarily eliminate the need for disability-related accommodations. It is important that students using accommodations understand what elements of UDL have been implemented. This information will allow students to assess their needs and move through their course knowing what additional supports they may or may not need.

Educators should continue to seek advice from their disability services office on how to accommodate individual students. It is critical that faculty and other staff understand that the procedural and substantive duty to accommodate requires a full assessment of the student’s disability-based needs that may not be upheld within UDL.

Case example

In your course you have implemented UDL by posting your course materials including lecture notes in advance of the class. You think this will make sure all students can access the learning this semester. However, Jackie, a student in your class who struggles with visual processing, requires an audio recording of your lecture and support from a class notetaker as an accommodation.

Case example

You have implemented a UDL practice of grace days for your course, where each student can submit their assignments up to two days late. Nick, a student in your class, has a learning disability that you are not aware of, and requires an extension of a week on the final assignment as an accommodation.

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