Strategic Brain Network

From It6740 Udl

[edit] Task Description

UDL summarizes brain functions into three networks. The second network is Strategic. The Strategic Network (SN for shorthand) asks, "How?" How are we going to learn? What are the learning processes I will use? How will I know if my stategies are working? What alternatives are there?

Your task in this section is to further define what the SN means in UDL. Discuss the strategies and tools you can use to take advantage of or facilitate the use of the SN.

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The following are the speaker's notes from slide 17 of the Overview of UDL slide show, which is the first tool in CAST's UDL Toolkits.

"The strategic networks are located in the front part of the brain and enable us to plan, execute, and monitor actions and skills. In learning situations, the strategic networks are critical. Examples of the strategic networks at work include: doing a project, taking a test, [editing a wiki], taking notes, listening to a lecture. They work in tandem with recognition networks to learn to read, compute, write, solve problems, plan and execute compositions and complete projects. Everyday examples of the strategic networks in action include cooking a meal, planning an outing, executing a golf swing, driving a car, etc."

In essence, it's the "take action" part of the brain.

The University of Washington has created many programs that address UDL. One particular program focusing on science-education outreach through UDL is called DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology). The DO-IT program not only caters to students with disabilities, but it also encourages participation from teachers or other faculty members who want to more effectively teach to and include students with disabilities. The university also has other outreach programs that focus on Native Americans. To help continue these programs and as a way to help regular faculty members, UW created a list of seven examples of instructional methods that employ principles of universal design ( The seven examples from the above site are:

1. Inclusiveness. Create a classroom environment that respects and values diversity.

2. Physical Access. Assure that classrooms, labs, and field work are accessible to individuals with a wide range of physical abilities and disabilities.

3. Delivery Methods. Use multiple modes to deliver content.

4. Web Pages. Provide printed materials in electronic format.

5. Interaction. Encourage different ways for students to interact with each other and with you.

6. Feedback. Provide effective prompting during an activity and feedback after the assignment is complete.

7. Provide multiple ways for students to demonstrate knowledge. For example, besides traditional tests and papers, consider group work, demonstrations, portfolios, and presentations as options for demonstrating knowledge.

As you can see, all seven of these principles can be used to help teachers in the classroom or business professionals who train others. It's important to note that the above examples in most cases have longer definitions with more detail. The Web site also contains a great deal more information about what UW is doing with UDL.


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