Jul 26, 2021Liked by Greg Ashman

Thank you Greg for your views on UDL. It was the first that I’d heard of UDL. So many grey days here in the Strathbogies, that I have renewed my interest in where Australia and many other nations are going in terms of early education.

Points of agreement from an aged beekeeper, are unlikely to mean much to you, nevertheless there are many, including:

. Your endorsement of Clarke’s view that students tend to enjoy the instructional methods that are least effective for them.

(The above I can relate to taking children on bushwalks; they have a preference for walking downhill, even after you explain to them that the hill must be climbed sooner or later; don’t make it any bigger.)

. Interesting and informative it is, but for the teacher and learner, as you quote Boysen explaining, ‘where learning actually takes in the brain is largely irrelevant to the learning sciences’.

ps I wandered momentarily into a bit of neurology, as I was reading your article and discovered:

‘Neural pathways are strengthened into habits through the repetition and practice of thinking, feeling and acting’.

An endorsement I thought for regularly ‘chanting the times-table’ and a myriad of other stuff so that future reasoning is not held back by ignorance of the basics.



Bob Buntine

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I appreciate you flagging Boysen's work. Looking forward to reading the entire paper.

Why do you think neuropsychologists and psychologists so readily endorse approaches like UDL or differentiation? As in "the number one thing I tell teachers that they should be working on is differentiation?" A prominent neuropsychologist actually said this to me last week.

Is this disagreement just a reflection of the fact that cognitive scientists are more interested in broader patterns and similarities between humans and psychologists and neuropsychologists are trained to notice difference?

Would be curious to get the two warring factions in a room together and have them sort it out.

I've always treated UDL as a process for anticipating and preparing for likely areas of student struggle, which is different from "the student chooses the assessment school" of thought.

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Aug 17, 2021Liked by Greg Ashman

Thank you for this post Greg. I recently had to sit through a PL workshop at my school that touted the wonders of UDL and I knew there was something fishy about it. Don't get me started on those brain diagrams! Another way to make a profit at the expense of our most academically-vulnerable students.

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Thank you, I was introduced to it back in 2014 in my Masters Ed but never took it on despite teaching in a specialist school. Now it has come up again as the ‘how’ to plan for and teach students with disabilities and I’m pulling my hair out once again. I’m so glad I have stumbled on this article a year later.

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