Course Title:

Systems Analysis for Sustainable Energy , SAIS


All courses from the Master of Arts in Sustainable Energy (MASE) implement UDL features and comply with digital accessibility.  The results from different course evaluations reflected that students find courses more effective when they include multiple means of representations and varied formats for learning materials and provide multiple strategies to navigate through Canvas.

Areas of Focus:

  • Represent content in a variety of formats 

“Students in this UDL course are mid-career professionals, each with their own pre-existing expertise.  Using this method has empowered participants to stretch themselves in areas that are previously unknown to them while permitting them to skip over things that are old hat. Participants also have the flexibility to ponder their Capstone project through a new lens that may not have occurred to them prior to this course.”

 Jennifer Rivers Cole, instructor

  • Barrier to Student Success

    Students sought multiple means of representation through alternatives formats to text-based learning resources and better navigation in their Canvas Learning Management System.

  • Solution

    In the Systems Analysis for Sustainable Energy course, assignments are varied and include both audio, video, and text-based options, along with formatting features that support students through accessibility and time management.

    Discussions include bulleted lists of instructions, grading criteria, and use of different colors to make some content stand out. The lecture videos include captions, transcripts, and estimated time for completion.

    Students complete weekly labs, such as Power the Grid, and Slowing Down an Amplifying Greenhouse Effect to incorporate active learning. Students are also encouraged to complete optional textbook problem sets for extra practice and the instructor is committed to providing feedback.

    Reading assignments also include videos from a variety of sources to supplement text-based readings. The instructor includes “Questions to Consider” to provide context and help students focus on the main ideas of the readings. This also helps students decide which readings to complete and gives them flexibility in content and time management.

    Students can choose whether to participate in discussions synchronously and asynchronously. They introduce themselves in Padlet, which gives them the opportunity to share photos, video, audio, and website links. The final project gives the students the opportunity to record video presentations.

    Multiple ways to navigate the course content include module navigation buttons on the homepage, hyperlinks in Module Overview and End-of-Module pages, and hyperlinked To-Do Lists to ensure a seamless workflow. The Module Overview pages include numbering structure, bullet points, to-do list, and alert students of what is coming up in the next module. The End-of-Module pages remind students of what they have to complete, preview content of subsequent module, and include “Lifeline” links should they need help. The Canvas Calendar reminds students of the module start and end dates.

  • Alignment with UDL
  • Additional Information

    Division/Department: School of Advanced International Studies  
    HUDL Ambassador: Paulina Rodriguez 
    Faculty Name: Jennifer Rivers Cole
    Instructional Designer: Jennifer Stawasz