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Syracuse University Libraries

Equity, Diversity, Accessibility, and Inclusion: Diversity in the Classroom

Main Research Guide of Syracuse University Libraries Diversity and Inclusion Team

Decentering Privilege

Related Research Guides from SU Libraries

Proactive Steps

Example Discussion Guidelines

These sample guidelines for facilitating discussions in the learning environment are from the University of Michigan Center for Research on Learning. 

Universal Design for Learning

This interactive template on the core elements of the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) framework will help you think about how to create a more inclusive learning experience. Although UDL has its roots in the design of learning for students with disabilities, the benefits of a UDL approach (indeed, the reason for the "Universal" part of UDL) is that it makes learning more relevant and powerful for all students. A video presentation (below) by Sam Johnston, Research Scientist with the Center for Applied Special Technologies (CAST) further ties the UDL framework to student success. In the context of this workshop, think about how UDL principles to foster engagement in learning (by engaging affective learning networks) apply to students with multiple identities.(The entire video is good, but the portion up through about 17.20 is most applicable).

Campus Contacts

Universal Design for Learning

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework to improve and optimize teaching and learning for all people based on scientific insights into how humans learn.

How can we design learning experiences so that they are meaningful and challenging for all learners? Whether you are designing instruction for in-person classroom experiences, online synchronous experiences, remote asynchronous experiences, or anything in between and beyond, Universal Design for Learning (UDL) can help us anticipate learner variability and make instruction flexible and useful for all.

UDL Tips for Designing Learning Experiences:

  • Start with a clear goal.
  • Encourage flexible means to achieve the goal.
  • Ensure all learners can access the materials and environment.
  • Make learning personally relevant.
  • Promote expert learning.


CAST (2020). UDL Tips for Designing Learning Experiences. Wakefield, MA: Author. Retrieved from

Library Resources on UDL

Additional Resources

Additional relevant resources on inclusive classrooms and teaching may be found on the Diversity in Higher Ed page of this guide.