CIDDL Research and Practice Briefs is a series of brief reports on research and practice regarding the innovative use of technology in special education, early childhood, related services personnel preparation and leadership personnel preparation programs as well as K-12 educational settings. For each brief, experts or practitioners in the field will be invited to discuss their research and practice on innovative use of technology. In addition, experts and practitioners will share their insights into opportunities and challenges about transferring and applying research and practice into teacher or leadership preparation programs. This series aims to spark conversations and provides an avenue for enhancing professional networking among experts and emergent scholars in the field.

Headshot of Dr. Richard Allen Carter

The guest expert of this CIDDL Research and Practice Brief is Dr. Richard Allen Carter, Jr., an assistant professor at the University of Wyoming (UW). Dr. Carter researches the education of students with disabilities in modern learning environments and the design of personalized professional learning. In this brief, Dr. Carter discusses his research and practices about micro-credentials as well as how he has utilized the innovation in special education teacher preparation programs at UW.

An Image of Dr. Lorna Quandt

The guest expert of this CIDDL Research and Practice Brief is Dr. Lorna Quandt, who is an Assistant Professor in the Ph.D. in Educational Neuroscience (PEN) program at Gallaudet University, a flagship institution for deaf education. Dr. Quandt is the science director of the Motion Light Lab and the director of the Action & Brain Lab, which investigates the neural substrates of action as applied to visual language and visual learning. In this brief, Dr. Quandt discusses her research and practices about developing and utilizing emerging technologies, such as virtual reality (VR) and mixed reality (MR), to create new ways of teaching and learning sign languages.

An image of Dr. Loui Lord Nelson

The guest expert of this CIDDL Research and Practice Brief is Dr. Loui Lord Nelson. Dr. Nelson is an author, UDL consultant, and host of the popular podcast “UDL in 15 Minutes.” In this brief, Dr. Nelson discusses how UDL as an educational framework helps ensure every learner, including students with and without disabilities, can gain access to the curriculum. Dr. Nelson also discusses the important role of technology as a tool that can provide students alternative means for accessing, engaging with, and expressing their understanding of the curriculum.

Headshot of Cynthia Curry

In this brief, Cynthia Curry discusses the meaning behind accessibility and how it can be the gateway into the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) framework. Cynthia explains the difference between accessibility and availability as well as offers guidance on what elements to look for when determining if an educational material is accessible. Finally, she discusses resources to help support a system’s level approach to the provision and distribution of accessible educational materials, including areas for future research.

An image of David Marcovitz

In this brief, Dr. David Marcovitz introduces the Educational Technology Social Justice Matrix, a preliminary model he created to help frame discourses regarding research, development, and application of educational technology through the lens of social activism and anti-racism. Dr. Marcovitz discusses the rationale behind the development of the Matrix and reviews emergent research that intersects educational technology and social justice. Finally, Dr. Marcovitz provides implications for future research on technology integration into teacher education programs.