Addressing Barriers To Differentiation/Universal Design Activity Essay

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Learning, Students, Language, Material, Technology, Politics, Principles, Solution

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2021/03/29

__ April 2015 (date)

Good school education is very important for everybody. It provides basic knowledge to the students that will be actively used for their future studies, career and life in general. One of the main tasks of the modern teachers is to create an equal opportunity for all their students to learn as much material as possible and to achieve the best possible results. On the way to this goal’s realization teachers face a number of barriers that should be overcome somehow. In this essay I am going to discuss one of such barriers that prevents students from learning the material successfully. Also I will try to suggest options for it’s removing using the principles of Universal Design Learning in combination with the technology solutions.
Universal Design means a way of thinking of people, who inhabit the places and spaces we build. It means the way of thinking about the diversity of any learners group and creating a principles set that will maximize learning opportunities (e.g. for all modalities, ages, life structures and life styles) (Moore).
Universal design principles for learning framework are as follows: to develop recognition learning it is necessary to use flexible, multiple presentation methods; to develop strategic learning it is good to use flexible, multiple expression and apprenticeship methods; to develop affective learning it is better to employ flexible, multiple engagement options ('Differentiated Instruction And Implications For UDL Implementation').
Learning barriers may be the result of the methods and materials’ inflexibility, or the learning system or environment, regardless it is online or in a classroom or self-paced conditions, or the educational system inflexibility (Moore).
Today’s classrooms are full of a diverse students range. Some of them are used to the internet and computers. Some are auditory learners; others are visual learners or kinesthetic learners. Certain quantity of students speaks English as a foreign language. Some part of students may be talented and gifted, others may be not. Some students may be limited by physical, behavioral, mental or emotional problems. I would like to discuss the possibilities for better material learning during the foreign language lessons by students who show poor results than their peers and have problems with effective learning.
In my opinion, the teacher should believe in all of his students’ talent and should try to judge all of them equally. Most of the children are capable to learn the foreign language (at least to the certain degree) and the teacher’s task is to help them and make them interested in the subject.
Given the highly demanding conditions teachers face nowadays, a large variety of new technology for learning can definitely assist with managing successful studying and save time. A lot of technological solutions, e.g. interactive whiteboards and visual learning devices, exist in order to help teachers with the challenge in the classrooms nowadays. Few people would deny the necessity for technologically equipped classrooms, and educators should determine which technological solution would be useful for the specific learning environment ('Creating Classrooms For Everyone'). Such a technology, in my opinion, can improve the process of learning making it more interesting and providing visual material. This way of teaching may increase the student’s results as it will attract their attention and they will use various aspects of learning, e.g. visual, audio, etc.
Interactive whiteboards and UDL principles. Interactive whiteboards are created to engage diverse students into the process of learning. They have been developed from constructivist pedagogy and comply with each of the principles of UDL. Such boards provide teachers with various methods to represent material using images, interactive text, video and sound files, and therefore engage a large variety of students. Learners can use the same qualities of the boards to show their understanding of the material. In particular touch-sensitive boards provide multiple possibilities for working with displayed information, for example, by pen tool, finger or other object. Also, interactive whiteboards create digital age learners, improving engagement of the student with tactile instant access to the modern resources ('Creating Classrooms For Everyone').
Another technological solution is using video and audio materials (movies, songs, TV shows, etc.) during the process of foreign language learning. This solution is not new relatively; however, there are classrooms that do not possess such possibility. This method provides students with the possibility to hear the foreign language, and, at the same time, to notice non-verbal (body) language of the speakers. Also it makes students acquainted with the culture of the country the language of which they learn and therefore increase their interest in learning. In order to make the process more effective, it is recommended to make pauses every 10-15 minutes and discuss the material for a while.
One more solution for the above-mentioned barrier is encouraging students to become on-line learners. There are many resources on the web created specifically for the foreign languages’ learners. Sometimes they can be used in addition to the curriculum; some of them are designed in accordance with the structure of the certain textbook. Such websites are very helpful in learning grammar and new vocabulary. They can be helpful for all students, especially for the visual learners.


Thus, in my opinion, technological solutions can help teachers to overcome the barrier related to the students’ low performance and lack of interest. Using interactive whiteboards, websites and watching movies are among the factors, which may significantly increase students’ interest to the subject. Of course, there are a lot of other factors that influence successful learning; however, the above-discussed ones can help to increase learners’ interest and therefore provide students with motivation and make them pay more attention to learning the foreign language.

Works Cited

'Creating Classrooms For Everyone'. SMART Technologies ULC (2009): 3-10. Web. 20 Apr. 2015.
'Differentiated Instruction And Implications For UDL Implementation'. National Center on Accessing the General Curriculum 8-16. Web. 20 Apr. 2015.
Moore, Stephanie L. 'Universal Design For Learning'. University of Northern Colorado (2007): n. pag. Web. 20 Apr. 2015.

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Addressing Barriers To Differentiation/Universal Design Activity Essay. Free Essay Examples - Published Mar 29, 2021. Accessed September 25, 2022.

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