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Refocusing Instructional Design

Accessible Instructional Design

ISBN: 978-1-78560-289-4, eISBN: 978-1-78560-288-7

Publication date: 1 December 2015


Accessibility design over the past several years has focused much of its attention on the development of a universal standard or a set of guidelines for delivering a diverse array of both content and instructional processes. Universal design for learning (UDL), for example, promotes providing multiple means of (a) representation, (b) action and expression, and (c) engagement for learners who have a wide range of disabilities as well as their typical peers. And while each instructional design element that represents a means of providing the differentiation required by the principle generally has a strong evidence-based support individually, it is difficult to assess any one of them within the larger ULD “multiple means” milieu of options. It is especially difficult to do this in regard to learners associated with any particular disability category. When it comes to targeted instruction, learner characteristics matter. It follows then that when it comes to developing an instructional design, that the learning characteristics of a targeted population be first and foremost considered as the point of departure in the design and development process. This chapter considers a wide range of instructional targets within the context of specific disability groups with a focus on learning goals, instructional design supports for those goals, and underlying cognitive processes that may help clarify the goals themselves as well as the instructional supports to achieve those goals.



Boone, R. and Higgins, K. (2015), "Refocusing Instructional Design", Accessible Instructional Design (Advances in Special Education Technology, Vol. 2), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 95-120.



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