The Universal Design for Learning principles refer to an emerging consensus among cognitive scientists and education researchers on what conditions and experiences lead to long-term retention and learning transfer.
Designing with UDL in mind ensures learning will be accessible to all learners and makes it easier to create learning experiences that are lasting and meaningful for all learners.
Presenting content in multiple ways ensures that all learners can access the content. It also deepens learning by creating opportunities to process the same concepts from multiple angles.
Canopy provides over a dozen unique ways for learning designers to present information including:
- listen to audio narration with a slides presentation
- watch videos
- read an embedded PDF
- watch a screencast the instructor recorded in Canopy
- read and respond to comments made by other learners in a discussion
- view and download a visual aid
Presenting content is important but learning does not really happen while receiving information.
Learning happens when you apply that information.
What makes Canopy especially powerful is the ability for learners to DEMONSTRATE their learning in multiple ways including:
- discussion threads
- audio response
- video response
- PDF annotation
- learner screencast
- copy, edit and submit Google Docs/Slides,
- create a Canva design inside the platform,
- multiple choice and multiple select questions
- assignment upload
Stimulate interest and motivation for learning.
Principle 3 is about creating a path to and through a training that keeps the learner interested and motivated.
In many cases this can mean blending self-paced learning with in-person or offline learning experiences.
Canopy also provides several ways for learning designers to leverage the third principle of UDL in online learning as well.
Organizations can create community pages to host course libraries for all of the courses they develop. Learners can then browse these courses and choose the ones that are most relevant to them.
Inside of cohort-based courses, facilitators can also use the ‘subgroups’ feature to control who sees what content. This means that even within a course, different people may see different content or questions based on the subgroup that they are in.
Learners also benefit from visual progress bars that adjust for individual lessons and units. Motivation is a central part of this principle and progress bars have been shown to be one of the most effective forms of motivation and reward - on par or better than much more elaborate gamification rewards.
By creating a platform built for how people learn, Canopy is raising the bar for what is possible with online learning.