Professional Education

Universal Design for Learning: Reaching All Learners

July 7-11, 2014

Tuition: $2,645

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What You Will Learn

Learn the UDL framework and understand how to engage all learners. Gain practical, hands-on solutions that will help you reach, teach and motivate your students.


Federal laws (IDEA, NCLB) require states to provide learners with diverse needs—especially those with disabilities—opportunities to access and achieve progress in the general education curriculum. However, providing equal access involves more than supplying every student with a textbook or a computer. Educators must ensure that the curriculum is cognitively challenging and that all students are actively engaged in learning and appropriately supported to reduce barriers to the curriculum while maintaining high achievement.

Program Overview

Universal Design for Learning is a practice-oriented program, helping to connect and align efforts at three organizational levels: classroom, school and district. The UDL approach considers the variability of all learners and offers educational methods and materials that eliminate costly, cumbersome and after-the-fact adaptations. It requires the collaboration of experts in teaching, educational administration, policymaking, technology and publishing, and provides a blueprint for creating flexible goals, methods, materials and assessments that enable all students to succeed in the classroom.

Program Objectives

  • Learn the UDL framework and how to apply and implement it in your educational setting. Acquire practical, classroom- and school-based applications to implement differentiated instruction. Address the diversity of students in the classroom
  • Study the latest brain research on diverse learners. Consider how scientific discoveries are reshaping our understanding of how individuals learn and what motivates them
  • Customize teaching and learning using new technologies. Understand how flexible technology compares with traditional print media as a learning tool
  • Explore new frontiers in the delivery of curricular content and how these advances will change the way classroom materials are developed and utilized
  • Consider national and local policies that affect teaching and learning for all students
  • Understand how government policies address the educational needs of children with disabilities and how the UDL approach can meet those needs

Concurrent Sessions

The program features large and small group sessions as well as concurrent sessions on topics of significant relevance to educators. Participants are able to choose which topics are most relevant to their particular UDL interests. Topics of the 2013 concurrent sessions included:

  • UDL implementation
  • Tools to support UDL
  • UDL and high-incidence disabilities
  • Online learning and UDL
  • UDL and social media
  • Curriculum planning with UDL
  • UDL in the math classroom
  • UDL and school culture

Who Should Attend

  • Superintendents, assistant superintendents
  • Directors of curriculum and instruction, special education directors
  • Principals, assistant principals, teachers and aides
  • Parents, disability advocates, and local, state and federal education leaders
  • Teams of educators or individuals are welcome to apply

Attending As A Team

Universal Design for Learning is ideally a team-based learning experience designed to support and empower key stakeholders who will work together to improve teaching and learning for all. Educators who attend as part of a team are able to increase the impact of their learning both while on campus and once they have returned home. Free from the usual distractions of the work setting, your team will benefit from additional opportunities to focus on your specific plan. Teams are able to collectively work on their approach, build a shared vision for moving forward and be better prepared to implement the plan as soon as they return home.

Testimonials: What People Are Saying

Invaluable. Thank you so much for this program. We really can change the world.”  —2013 participant 

“I now have a full tool box that I can use as a resource to teach all learners and have fun at the same time.” —2013 participant

The overall quality was excellent. I can't wait to come back!” —2013 participant

 Read more testimonials here.

Faculty Chairs

Thomas Hehir is the Silvana and Christopher Pascucci Professor of Practice in Learning Differences at HGSE. Hehir has more than 30 years of experience in instruction, administration and research. He served as director of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs, where he was responsible for federal leadership in implementing the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). An advocate for children with disabilities in the education system, he has written on special education, special education in the reform movement, due process and least restrictive environment issues.

David Rose is Lecturer on Education at HGSE and Co-founding Director and Chief Scientist of Cognition & Learning at CAST (Center for Applied Special Technology). Rose helped to found CAST to expand opportunities for students with disabilities through the innovative development and application of technology. Rose specializes in developmental neuropsychology and in the universal design of learning technologies. He applies CAST’s work in neural networks and learning to both the design and the content of his teaching at HGSE. He also serves as a member of several public-policy initiatives to promote the adoption and dissemination of the principles of universal design.


Elizabeth Berquist, Assistant Professor, Department of Special Education, Towson University

Patricia Lampron, Principal, Dr. William Henderson Inclusion Elementary School

Grace Meo, Senior Director of Professional Learning and Outreach Services, CAST

Jon Mundorf, Fifth Grade Teacher, Collier County Public Schools

Enrollment Instructions

Admission to Universal Design for Learning is competitive; we regret that we are unable to accommodate all applicants. To maximize the learning experience, the program aims to bring together as diverse a group as possible. Both individuals and teams are welcome to apply. As the program fills quickly, early application is encouraged.

Team application instructions, click here

Individual application instructions, click here.


The comprehensive tuition includes all instructional materials and refreshments. Participants receive a certificate of participation and a letter confirming clock hours of instruction.

Payment or a purchase order is due 30 days after registration. If acceptance into the program falls less than 30 days prior to program start date, payment is due upon acceptance. Participants are responsible for their own travel expenses.


Hotel accommodations are made available to participants at a reduced rate. Detailed program information and accommodation options will be provided to all admitted participants. The Harvard Graduate School of Education is not responsible for non-refundable travel arrangements or other planning expenses incurred. We recommend that you not make lodging and travel arrangements until you are admitted to the program.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellations must be submitted via fax or email. Full refunds will be given up to 30 days prior to the start of the program. Due to program demand and pre-program preparations, cancellations received 29–14 days prior to the start of the program are subject to a fee of 10% of the program tuition. Cancellations received within 13 days prior to the start of the program and no-shows are subject to the full program tuition. Please note: cancellation fees are based upon the date the written request is received.

The Harvard Graduate School of Education reserves the right to change faculty or cancel programs at its discretion. In the unlikely event of program changes, the school is not responsible for non-refundable travel arrangements or other planning expenses incurred.

Non-Discrimination Policy

The Harvard Graduate School of Education affirms the right of all individuals to equal treatment in education without regard to age, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, handicap, national origin, or any other factors that are extraneous to effective performance. The Harvard Graduate School of Education will accommodate anyone with disabilities.