Last night I stayed up way too late reading Kevin M. Gannon’s recently published teaching manifesto, A Radical Hope. I ended up highlighting almost every page. There is so much to think about in this text. Particularly relevant was his discussion of how teaching online can raise accessibility issues that can be helpful to think about in face-to-face teaching as well. He notes he first encountered universal design for learning practices when preparing to teach online. He explains:
Put simply, UDL asks us to stop thinking about disability and accommodations as somehow deviating from the desired norms for teaching and learning, and instead challenge ourselves to create a learning space that might not need to make accommodations in the first place. Rather than pathologizing and ‘othering’ students with disabilities, can we instead approach our worth through a paradigm that allows for diverse ways of learning, and then incorporate that range of difference into our course design and activities?