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ADCET UDL Symposium: Rhetorical Storytelling and UDL - Leveraging Narratives for Systemic Change

The recordings will be added here in late September

In-person workshop

How can we use the groundswell of individuals employing Universal Design for Learning (UDL) to break down institutional barriers and instigate enduring transformations? The UDL framework significantly enhances learning adaptation, promoting a model that is both inclusive and responsive. This workshop explored this pressing question by underscoring the power of storytelling in effecting institutional change, working towards developing an inclusive culture both through UDL and driven by advocates of UDL. It demonstrated how personal narratives and case studies not only communicate but deeply influence systemic inclusivity within educational settings. By highlighting individuals' challenges, barriers, and solutions, these stories garner support and vividly illustrate the tangible impacts of UDL, thereby transforming abstract principles into compelling calls to action.

This interactive session focused on crafting powerful narratives that encapsulated the essence of UDL and its real-world effects on both students and staff. Participants had the opportunity to engage with examples, share their own stories, and discuss strategies to effectively showcase these narratives within their own contexts. This workshop outline was as follows:

  1. Share and Scaffold: The team shared a ‘case study’ of implementing and upscaling UDL at the University of Sydney and provided a scaffold to create case studies
  2. Think: Time was given to individuals to think through and/or finesse ideas for what might be a useful case study for their context
  3. Discuss: Participants were then placed in breakout rooms to work in groups together on challenges and to share their ideas
  4. Pitch: Participants were given the option to pitch in the workshop and receive feedback
  5. Attendees left equipped to advocate for UDL-driven changes across campuses, promoting an inclusive culture that enhances learning experiences for all students.


Dr Ella Collins-White, University of Sydney

(June 2024)