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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

Universal Design for Learning


Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework that provides a set of practices based on cognitive neuroscience and inclusive pedagogy which optimizes teaching and learning in any learning environment. Similar to universal design which applies to the architectural design of physical spaces, UDL is intended to remove barriers for all learners.


The three guiding principles of UDL include (CAST, 2018):

  • Multiple means of representation
  • Multiple means of action and expression
  • Multiple means of engagement
Implementing these principles involves the following:
  • Using a variety of ways to motivate learners
  • Communicating course content in various formats
  • Using various types of assessment so learners can demonstrate what they know


Applying the principles of UDL does not have to be complicated and can help you to meet the needs and learning preferences of many learners. There are also specific requirements for accessibility under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) for Public Sector organizations. For more details visit the Ontario Tech Accessibility Hub. 

  • Digital Content
    • Use image descriptions
    • Avoid jargon, use plain language
    • Chunk content into smaller sections
    • Use open access materials or ensure you follow copyright
    Review the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) for more detailed information.
  • Accessible Documents
    • Use a sans serif font
    • Always use camel case (title case)
    • Be careful with bold, italics and underline
    • Use descriptive links
    • Do not add unnecessary spacing for aesthetic
    • Include high colour contrast
    • Ensure document can be printed in greyscale
    • Include alternative text (Alt-Text)
    • Careful with tables
    • Use the built in accessibility checker
    Review the Ontario Tech Accessible Documents Guide and the Branding Guidelines for more information.
  • Multimedia (Video and Audio)
    • Create shorter videos (5-10 minutes, maximum 30 minutes)
    • Be aware of lighting
    • Add closed captions
    • Make a transcript available
    • Ensure audio is clear
    • Rehearse before recording or create a script (this will help for the captions and transcript as well)
    Use the WebAIM guidelines for different multimedia formats, including Infographics.


For more on this, visit the Ontario Tech Accessibility Hub.

If you would like to discuss some of the ways you might apply these principles in your courses, we invite you to arrange a meeting with one of our educational developers at the Teaching and Learning Centre (


CAST (2018). Universal Design for Learning Guidelines version 2.2.