Higher Education

Global Takes on UDL and Special Education with Dr. Eunice Ofori

Eunice Ofori has a unique background, hailing originally from Ghana where she was an educator for 20 years. She immigrated to the U.S. in 2011 when her husband began his PhD program, intrigued by the American education system and efforts to provide accommodations for students with disabilities. This was lacking in Ghana and a key motivator for Eunice. She went on to pursue her own PhD research on optimizing instructional messaging for mobile devices, examining it through both an accessibility lens and a learning lens.

Now at Tulane University, Eunice works to promote innovation and accessibility in education. As a Senior Instructional Designer and Faculty Program Coordinator, she created a Universal Design for Learning summer academy to increase faculty understanding of UDL principles and how to apply them in course design. She also sees potential for AI tools like ChatGPT to serve as assistive technologies, allowing flexible engagement with content whether via text, visuals or other modalities. While UDL has made strides in the U.S., these concepts are still not widely understood globally. Eunice notes the decentralized American education system allows for customization but also inconsistencies in qualifying for student services. She stresses the importance of continuing the conversation on accessibility, staying open to learning, and properly leveraging the technologies already available to better reach and support all learners.