Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Guidelines for Mobile Devices and Technology Integration in Teacher Education

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Guidelines for Mobile Devices and Technology Integration in Teacher Education

Neal Shambaugh (West Virginia University, USA) and Kimberly K. Floyd (West Virginia University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2953-8.ch001


Universal Design for Learning (UDL) guidelines provide recommendations for flexible technology integration in teacher education. With the advent of mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, how do educators in teacher education programs (teacher education faculty, preservice teachers, public school teachers) use mobile devices within a flexible curriculum that addresses the learning of diverse students? Section one of this chapter describes the legal and administrative context for accessibility, the UDL conceptual framework, technology integration in teacher education, the TPCK model for technology integration, and the use of mobile devices in teacher education. Section two provides recommendations for applying UDL principles to mobile devices in public schools.
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Any instructional innovation requires careful consideration of the context for its use, a set of realities, which drive the lives of teachers and consequently influence student performance and developmental growth. A summary of major legislation for accessibility, best practices for web accessibility standards, and the institutional review of courses and curriculum, addresses the legal side of accessibility for mobile devices.

The major relevant legislation includes the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 and Sections 504 (rights to persons with disabilities) and 508 (eliminate barriers in technology and ensure accessibility by Federal agencies) of the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1973 (and as amended in 1992 and 1998). Both pieces of legislation protect individuals with disabilities from discrimination. Technical standards of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act cover accessibility of software, web-based information, and technology applications such as audio and video. Section 508 addresses legal compliance of Federal agencies and units doing business with the Federal government. Section 508 also includes technical standards against which products can be tested to determine if they meet technical compliance.

Key Terms in this Chapter

NETS: National Educational Technology Standards developed by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). Standards were developed for students, teachers, and administrators.

21st Century Learning Standards: A national standards initiative specifying foundational learning outcomes but adding higher level outcomes of critical thinking and problem solving.

Assistive Technology: Hardware and software, which address individual physical and learning needs.

Asynchronous Delivery: Online activity which is accessed by student on their own time.

Synchronous Delivery: Online activity when instructor and students participate at the same time.

Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPCK): A technology integration framework from Koehler and Mishra (2008) based on the relationships between content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge, technological knowledge, and technological content knowledge.

Universal Design (UD): Characterizing design processes and designed products that serve people across their lifespan.

Center for Applied Special Technologies (CAST): The organization which developed the UDL framework.

Universal Design for Learning (UDL): A framework of ensuring that diverse learners have access to and receive appropriate education.

Personal Data Assistants (PDA): Hand-held devices enabling anywhere, anytime communication and activity.

Affordances: Attributes or features of a designed object that enable humans in some way.

Professional Learning Communities (PLC): Work teams in public schools usually organized around grade levels to investigate specific topics for professional development.

Digital Divide: The idea that some people do not have access to technology.

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG): Guidelines for making web content accessible to diverse learners, published by the Web Accessibility Initiative, now in a 2.0 version.

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