Our readers come from many different backgrounds and traditions. We are aware that a “one size fits all” approach cannot work for our readers – who may be staff, mature students, non-English speakers, first-generation College students, part-time students with busy family and work commitments… or something else entirely. We want to ensure that any innovation or change we introduce for specific groups will also benefit the wider University community.
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is one approach we are using to achieve change that helps all our users. Our recent collaboration with the Disability Service on the TCDSense project, which seeks to improve the Library’s sensory environment by introducing spaces, furniture and services for more conducive learning and comfort, is not only benefiting students with sensory overload but all students.
In our teaching, we have committed to training the Library’s Teaching & Research Support team on UDL principles, with some colleagues already having completed the Trinity-INC Professional Learning Module in Inclusive Practices for Teaching and Learning this summer. The advantages of this is already being realised as we roll out new ways for students to access our teaching materials and sessions as well as incorporating more student interaction in Library workshops.
The Library is constantly looking at ways to make its services and resources more inclusive and accessible. We continue to offer a range of customised services to students with disabilities and are expanding our vision of inclusion in our physical and virtual environments as well as in our skills training. Another upcoming project is the overhaul of Library signage which will be guided by UD principles.
We are continuing to base our work on evidence and best practice through liaison with departments such as the Disability Service and Student Learning Development, partnering on research projects, and reviewing user feedback. If you have an idea or observation which you feel could be included, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.