Application of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Principles to Surgical Education during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Karen J. Dickinson, Susie L. Gronseth
2020 Journal of Surgical Education  
During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, we have faced unprecedented challenges in the delivery of surgical education. At the time of writing, changes to the structure and nature of the surgical workforce are occurring rapidly, even daily. Surgical educators are utilizing remote learning solutions, including flipped classroom approaches, online educational materials, telemedicine, and simulations, to continue education for surgical residents despite cancelations of face-to-face instruction. Our
more » ... ective is to delineate an interdisciplinary strategy, utilizing the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), by which we can optimize learning during this pandemic. This perspective describes the UDL framework which can be used to situate solutions to issues with delivery of surgical education during this pandemic within the broader view of strategic inclusive instructional design to meet diverse learning needs.. The principles of UDL can inform curricular and pedagogical changes in surgical education that may be employed during a time of social distancing, isolation, and quarantine. UDL involves planning flexibility into curricular design from the outset, recognizing that learners are varied in their learning preferences and capabilities, motivational characteristics, and environmental constraints. Viewing the design of remote learning opportunities through the UDL lens aims to remove barriers to learning during this pandemic by targeting three areas: expansion of the means that information is communicated, ways that learners are supported and motivated, and approaches to assessing learning through available distance learning technologies.
doi:10.1016/j.jsurg.2020.06.005 pmid:32576451 pmcid:PMC7274614 fatcat:uzu76ijn65a7jnrq35ligoymau