Universal Design Course Offered to All Students This Fall

Photo of iPhone with universal design features.
iPhone with universal design features.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 23, 2017) — The University of Kentucky Human Development Institute is offering a new undergraduate universal design class in Fall 2017 for students from any discipline. HDI 350: Universal Design is an interdisciplinary course providing students with an opportunity to learn about the foundations and principles of universal design. 

“From web developers and engineers to artists and educators, understanding usability and producing products usable to all increases engagement and strengthens your professional competence," said Anna Bard, HDI staff member. "Learning universal design principles and deploying them early in your career will set you apart from others in your field.”

What is universal design? Universal design creates products and environments to be as usable as possible by as many people as possible. For example, an elevator is universally designed to be usable by those with wheelchairs, a parent pushing a baby stroller, people moving furniture, or adults with their arms full of packages. Everyone can benefit from universal design.

Tremendous technological and social changes over the past decade have led to the integration of principles of universal design into products and environments. Universal design promotes inclusion and participation of all people, including people with disabilities, within an increasingly diverse world. The emergence of universal design also contributes to the conversation around the social justice and sustainability movements. 

Students can learn more about how different disciplines can continue to make the world more inclusive by registering for HDI 350: Universal Design. Priority registration for the fall 2017 semester is open March 27-April 18.

After taking HDI 350, students who want to continue learning about universal design have the opportunity to enroll in the new universal design certificate program.

For more information, contact Elaine Eisenbaum at eeisenbaum@uky.edu