Universal Design for Learning: You Are on Your Way Already!

The main portion of this tip is brought to you by Dr. Jamie Gunderson from the School of Education and a READI Equity Fellow through Faculty Development.

Here’s an interesting insight – chances are you’re already incorporating Universal Design for Learning (UDL) into your teaching methods, even if you’re not consciously aware of it. What is UDL? UDL is an educational framework that aims to create inclusive and flexible learning environments by providing learners with options to engage, represent, and express learning. How am I already implementing UDL? Well, consider if you incorporate peer discussions or collaborative group activities in your lessons. These practices promote collaboration and a sense of community, in line with UDL Checkpoint 8.3. Are you using tools like Canvas or other technologies to share information, interact with your learners, or enhance their engagement? This is a form of using multimedia for communication, as outlined in UDL Checkpoint 5.1. The UDL framework encourages us to reflect on how our existing teaching methods align with UDL’s principles, guidelines, and checkpoints to support all learners.

Another aspect of UDL that I find particularly appealing is its commitment to evidence-based continuous improvement. Did you know that the UDL principles, guidelines, and checkpoints are regularly reviewed, revised, and updated based on ongoing research and feedback from practitioners? Currently, there is a strong emphasis on enhancing equity, diversity, and inclusion, which you can explore further by looking into the UDL Rising to Equity initiative. As soon as the updated framework becomes available, I’ll make sure to share it with our campus community. In the meantime, I encourage you to kickstart or continue your journey towards UDL and equity, diversity, and inclusion by exploring the abundant resources on the Instruction page of the READI Hub, a repository sponsored by the Office of Faculty Development. You’re likely to discover numerous strategies and ideas that will benefit your teaching practices and some that you may already be implementing – kudos! 

For more tips, and resources, or to geek out on all things UDL, please contact Jamie Linn Gunderson at jlgunderson@csuchico.edu.

Additionally, we in FDEV want to highlight another great resource from the NCFDD library. We spend a lot of time as tenure-track faculty working towards tenure and promotion, but not enough time thinking about what happens when you get there. Last Spring NCFDD hosted two panel discussions on what happens after earning tenure and one on promotion to full professor. You have to sign up for NCFDD (which you have free access to for this year), but once you do you will have access to an incredible catalog of useful resources for your classroom and professional development. 

Last thing, remember we have a host of opportunities for faculty this Winter and into Spring. Check them out and find something that will help you.

Zach Justus
Interim Director of Faculty Development
Professor of Communication Arts and Sciences
Google Voice/Text: 530-487-4150

Applications for the Initial Slate of FLCs are Due Today

We are trying not to clutter your inbox so we are using this week’s tip to simply remind you that applications for the initial slate of Faculty Learning Communities are due today. There is something here for everyone. 

We are excited to bring you the initial slate of Fall 2023 offerings from FDEV and partners. All applications are live now and are due on Tuesday 9/12 at 11:59pm. Applications will be evaluated by members of the FDEV board or sponsoring units.

This group of programs includes Faculty Development programs and offerings from Undergraduate Education and International Education. We collaborated to try and maximize visibility and accessibility, but we want to be sure those programs receive the credit they deserve. Any questions about the programming broadly should be directed to Interim Director Zach Justus.

Collaborative Online International Education (COIL)
Who: Tenure/Tenure-Track and Lecturers
Format: Synchronous and Online
Compensation: $500
Length: Fall Semester
Contact: Dr. Nan Li
Full Description
Application 

International Education and Global Engagement (IEGE) is offering an opportunity to participate in a Faculty Learning Community (FLC) this fall to assist professors with the implementation of Collaborative Online International Education (COIL) as a course component on our campus. COIL engages your classes with students across the world in discussion, group projects, and/or problem solving, and professors have the opportunity to collaborate in teaching with colleagues across the world.  

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Teaching (EDIT)
Who: Tenure/Tenure-Track and Lecturers
Format: In Person
Compensation: $500
Length: Fall Semester
Contact: Dr. Alisa Wade, Allison McConnell, and Zach Justus
Full Description
Application

The Office of Faculty Development (FDEV) in collaboration with the READI Hub will be offering an Equity, Diversity, Inclusion (EDI) Teaching Series in Fall 2023. The series is led by Dr. Alisa Wade (History) in collaboration with Allison McConnell (TLP). The series includes six workshops, and is designed to offer faculty an introduction to basic concepts of equity, diversity, inclusion, and how they can be implemented in the classroom, to create more equitable and accessible learning environments. 

Quality Learning and Teaching (QLT)
Who: Tenure/Tenure-Track and Lecturers
Format: Asynchronous and Online
Compensation: $750
Length: Fall Semester
Contact: Zach Justus
Full Description
Application

The Office of Faculty Development is partnering with the Technology & Learning Program (TLP) to offer the Quality Learning and Teaching program, which is designed around the QLT evaluation rubric. The course is offered as an asynchronous, self-paced course in Canvas.

STEM Universal Design for Learning (UDL) 
Who: STEM Faculty only (NS and ECC) Tenure/Tenure-Track and Lecturers
Format: Hybrid–all meetings online and in person
Compensation: $1880
Length: Full Academic Year
Contact: Dr. Jamie Linn Gunderson and Zach Justus
Full Description
Application

The Office of Faculty Development is excited to offer an NSF-funded Faculty Learning Community (FLC) focused on the implementation of teaching strategies that support student learning in STEM. 

Supporting Undergraduate Research via Assignment Design
Who: Tenure/Tenure-Track and Lecturers; preference for faculty teaching 100-200 level courses.
Format: in person
Compensation: $250
Length: Three workshop sessions; 2 hours each
Dates: Mondays, Oct 2, 9, & 16 from 9:00-11:00am
Contact: Dr. Kim Jaxon
Application

The Office of Undergraduate Education and Academic Success is offering support for Undergraduate Research. Dr. Kim Jaxon, Coordinator of Undergraduate Research, is leading the workshop series focused on assignment design. These workshop sessions offer an opportunity to design assignments that weave primary research practices into existing courses to support expanded undergraduate research experiences. We know that inviting students to engage in authentic research with faculty is an effective high-impact practice. We also know that mentoring and supporting undergraduate research is time-consuming, often taking place outside the teaching of our courses. We will work with model assignments, design assignments, and support each other as we try out ways to enrich our curriculum with undergraduate research. 

Be on the lookout for additional programs later in the Fall. 

Coming in the Spring
Chico Affordable Learning Solutions (CAL$) with Beth Shook
Teaching Climate Change Resilience (TCCR) with Mark Stemen 

Zach Justus
Interim Director of Faculty Development
Professor of Communication Arts and Sciences

Implement Universal Design for Learning in your Courses

Sent on behalf of Dr. Jamie Gunderson, Assistant Professor in the School or Education and READI Equity Fellow

Hello, Fellow Faculty! 

If you are anything like me, the winding down of one semester serves as a sort of cue to begin planning for the next semester. This planning normally begins with a review of the scope and goals of the courses I am preparing to teach as well as reflection of my previous experience with teaching the courses’ content. During my reflection, I think about any lessons and/or activities that students engaged with and responded favorably too. Next, and this part is my favorite, I take a look at The UDL Guidelines to identify any areas in which my lessons and activities align to Universal Design for Learning (UDL). From there, I can pinpoint any areas that I may want to focus on or increase my implementation. Here is an example; In the fall I am teaching a ChicoFlex course that I will be facilitating via Canvas. In my previous teaching of this content, I noticed that students appreciated the opportunity to review and provide feedback on each others’ work as this practice fosters collaboration and community (UDL Checkpoint 8.3). As this course is new to the Canvas platform, I am currently working on creating a module and assignment in Canvas wherein students can submit their work for peer review and feedback. This module, launching in the coming semester, uses the Canvas platform to facilitate the peer review and because I promote the use of Kurzweil in all my courses to support reading and writing, I am now using multimedia for communication (UDL Checkpoint 5.1) and multiple tools for composition and construction (UDL Checkpoint 5.2). As my example suggests, the implementation of UDL begins with reflection and recognition – consider what it is that you do in your teaching that works and review the principles, guidelines, and checkpoints to determine where those practices align with UDL. From there, challenge yourself to select an additional principle, guideline, or checkpoint to focus on for future implementation. 

Interested in implementing UDL within your teaching? In true UDL fashion, here are three options for you to start your UDL journey:

  1. Adapt and apply the above example to your own teaching practice and review the UDL Guidelines.
  2. Check out the UDL Teaching Guide on the FDEV website for tips, ideas, and more UDL-focused resources.
  3. Recommended Option – Join us on Thursday, 5/11/23, in Colusa 100A from 12:30 – 2:00 PM, to see examples of UDL implementation and chat with faculty who are participating in the UDL Faculty Learning Community!

For more tips, resources, or to geek out on all things UDL, please contact Jamie Linn Gunderson: jlgunderson@csuchico.edu

Universal Design for Learning FLC

Dear faculty,

I am excited to promote a new faculty learning community (FLC) focusing on Universal Design for Learning (UDL), which will be offered during the 2022-2023 academic year! Dr. Jamie Linn Gunderson and Dr. Kathryn Mercurio will co-lead this FLC. 

 In this FLC, participants are invited to think about UDL in the design of their assignments, assessments, and activities to promote inclusion, accessibility, and student success. During the FLC, participants will be guided through the creation of interactive lessons, activities, and assessments that align with the principles, guidelines, and checkpoints of UDL. This is the first FLC offered under the auspices of READI, the new hub for Research in Equity, Antiracism, Diversity and Inclusion, housed in Faculty Development. We will use this FLC to pilot an assessment model of FDEV programs as they impact student success, to fully understand how faculty’s professional development can improve equitable student learning.

 Please review the full call for applications (Google Doc), and read more about the UDL guidelines(opens in new window). I also want to share an episode(opens in new window) of Rise, Teach, Learn (the FDEV podcast) that focuses on UDL. In our next podcast episode(opens in new window) (to be released on September 8th) Jamie, Katie, and I will sit down to discuss some aspects of the FLC in more detail, so stay tuned if you want to learn more!

 Applications to the FLC will close on Monday September 12th, at 5:00 pm. Please fill out this google form(opens in new window), if you plan to apply.

 FLC meetings times

The FLC will meet monthly on Thursdays from 12:30 -2:00 PM. The meetings will occur in person and/or via Zoom using Chicoflex technology.9/29/22 Introduction and Exploration of UDL

10/27/22 Culturally Responsive Learning Environments & Inclusive Syllabi
11/17/22 UDL: Designing Relevant and Rigorous Assignments & Assessments
12/15/22 Inclusive & Accessible Syllabi Showcase
2/16/23 UDL: Designing Engaging Lessons and Activities
3/23/23 UDL: Accessible Learning Materials and Resources
4/13/23 Collaborative Work Session – Model Course Design Portfolio
5/11/23 Course Design/Redesign Symposium

Please contact Jamie Linn Gunderson (jlgunderson@csuchico.edu(opens in new window)) for questions related to this FLC or Chiara Ferrari cfferrari@csuchico.edu(opens in new window), Director of Faculty Development, for broader questions related to FDEV. 

FDEV Teaching Guides

Dear faculty,

I truly hope you had a chance to breathe and re-energize during Spring Break and dedicate some time to yourselves!

I want to use this Tuesday Tip to give you an update about and encourage you to explore our Teaching Guides page, because it has grown significantly since I originally introduced it in January.

The creation of this page was inspired by Vanderbilt University’s Center for Teaching, which offers a series of Guides grouped into 5 different areas: Principles & Frameworks, Pedagogies & Strategies, Reflecting & Assessing, Challenges & Opportunities, and Populations & Contexts. I invite you to explore their website as they offer a variety of important resources.

Our Teaching Guides are grouped into 5 different areas: Assessment, Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion, Instructional Planning (in progress), Pedagogy, and Technology & Accessibility. One useful tool in the page is a search bar that allows you to narrow down your search and focus on topics that are more directly related to your needs, as opposed to having to browse through all teaching guides.

Thanks to our FDEV faculty fellows (Jamie Gunderson, Chris Crews, Dustin Bakkie, and Paul Bailey) we now have 20 teaching guides available, and we expect to have at least 50 by the end of the Spring semester. The teaching guides are built around principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), so each of them offers information about research on the topic, ideas for practical application in the classroom, and a series of resources that you can explore (websites), listen to (podcasts), watch (videos), or read (more articles on the topic).

And if ULD is your bread and butter, I want to encourage you to attend tomorrow’s Go Virtual Community meeting (11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., via Zoom) because Jamie Gunderson will share her expertise and passion about UDL.

The FDEV faculty fellows and I really hope that you will find these teaching guides useful and we invite you to reach out to FDEV if you want to contribute to our repository.

Chiara Ferrari, Ph.D.
Faculty Development, Director
Campus zip: 026
Phone: 530-898-3094
www.csuchico.edu/fdev
Professor
Department of Media Arts, Design, and Technology
Campus zip: 504
Phone: 530-898-4647