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Call for Applications: 2020 Faculty Learning Community: UDL Syllabus Rubric


This Faculty Learning Community (FLC) invites participating faculty to incorporate principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) into a syllabus–a bedrock document of any course, one reflecting both the content and activities of the course but also its underlying design.

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework based on developing tools, teaching materials, and teaching strategies that are responsive to the learning differences and challenges that a diverse student population presents. Typically, after principles of UDL are incorporated into a course, the changes benefit all students, not just students with specific needs and challenges.

A syllabus is a great starting point for incorporating principles of UDL into course design, teaching materials, and teaching methods. By taking a few simple steps you can create a syllabus that will serve as a tool that helps prepare all students for success. During spring semester 2020, faculty in the UDL Syllabus Rubric Faculty Learning Community will begin creating such a tool, working in a cohort of faculty to revise syllabi to reflect the principles of UDL.

Activities of the Faculty Learning Community

Faculty will participate in the FLC as a cohort, completing the following activities:

  • Attend seven mandatory cohort meetings during spring semester 2020.  Meetings will introduce a variety of tools and strategies for design and intervention related to student learning and success. All meetings are scheduled for Tuesdays at 10:30-11:45 AM in RFH 301 on the following dates: January 21, February 4, February 18, March 3, March 17, March 31, and April 14, 2020.
  • Using the UDL Syllabus Rubric as a guide, revise portions of a syllabus or an entire syllabus to reflect principles of UDL.
  • Participate in peer-review activities focused on revisions made to syllabi and the challenges and opportunities such revisions create.
  • Complete a variety of short reading assignments in preparation for meetings of the FLC.
  • Respond to a survey at the end of the semester to assess your satisfaction with the experience of being part of a Faculty Learning Community and to assess your perception of the value of that experience.

Goals of the Faculty Learning Community

After participating in this Learning Community, faculty will be able to do the following:

  • Describe the fundamental principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and the manner in which such principles benefit students.
  • Identify sections of a syllabus that will be strengthened and improved by revising to incorporate principles of UDL.
  • Revise sections of a syllabus (or an entire syllabus) to incorporate principles of UDL.
  • Discuss the importance of and defining characteristics of “student-oriented” rhetoric in course communications, including the syllabus.
  • Create a syllabus statement about support for students with disabilities, one that reflects the principles of UDL.


All Boise State instructors are eligible to apply to participate, including adjunct faculty, lecturers, and tenured/tenure-track faculty.

Financial Support

Each participant in the Faculty Learning Community will receive a stipend of $300, paid as supplemental salary.

Application Process and Deadline

To apply, complete this application form before 5:00 PM on Friday December 13, 2019.

Selection Criteria

Applicants will be selected, in part, on the strength and thoroughness of answers to the questions on the application form. However, our selection of faculty will also be guided by our desire to assemble a Faculty Learning Community with members from a variety of disciplines and colleges, as well as members of various faculty rank (professor, assistant professor, associate professor, adjunct, etc.).

Preference will be given to faculty with the following characteristics:

  • familiarity with the principles of Universal Design for Learning (NOTE: Lack of familiarity with the principles of UDL does not disqualify you from participating in the FLC.)
  • prior participation in faculty development opportunities focused on course design (for instance, Course Design Institute, Summer Mobile Learning Institute, or FLC for Accessibility and Universal Design for Learning).
  • prior experience teaching the course from which the syllabus to be revised is drawn


This FLC is sponsored by the IDEA Shop, a division of the Center for Teaching and Learning.


Please direct any questions to Kevin Wilson, instructional design consultant, IDEA Shop (, phone 208.426.3153).