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UDL Guidelines - Version 2.0: Research Evidence

Checkpoint 6.3: Facilitate managing information and resources

II. Provide Multiple Means of Action and Expression

Executive Function


Learning can be inaccessible when it requires the ability to manage information and resources, and where there are no options for individuals who differ in such executive functions. Wherever executive functions or working memory capacity are not construct-relevant in a lesson, it is important to provide a variety of internal scaffolds and external organizational aids to keep information organized and “in mind.” The research listed here suggests the effectiveness of strategies such as graphic and cognitive organizers, concept maps, explicit instruction in how to evaluate information, and templates for note-taking. The scholarly reviews and opinion pieces provide more classroom-based perspectives on facilitating students' management of information and resources.

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Experimental and Quantitative Evidence:

Alvermann, D. E., & Boothby, P. R. (1986). Children's transfer of graphic organizer instruction. Reading Psychology, 7(2), 87-100.

Anderson-Inman, L., Knox-Quinn, C., & Horney, M. A. (1996). Computer-based study strategies for students with learning disabilities: Individual differences associated with adoption level. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 29(5), 461-484.

Boon, R. T., Burke, M. D., Fore III, C., & Spencer, V. G. (2006). The impact of cognitive organizers and technology-based practices on student success in secondary social studies classrooms. Journal of Special Education Technology, 21(1), 5-15.

Boon, R. T., Fore, C., Ayres, K., & Spencer, V. G. (2005). The effects of cognitive organizers to facilitate content-area learning for students with mild disabilities: A pilot study. Journal of Instructional Psychology, 32(2), 101-118.

Bowler, L. (2001). Primary school students, information literacy and the web. Education for Information, 19(3), 201-223.

Boyle, J. R., & Weishaar, M. (1997). The effects of expert-generated versus student-generated cognitive organizers on the reading comprehension of students with learning disabilities. Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 12(4), 228-235.

Carnes, E. R., Lindbeck, J. S., & Griffin, C. F. (1987). Effects of group size and advance organizers on learning parameters when using microcomputer tutorials in kinematics. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 24(9), 781-789.

Clements-Davis, G. L., & Ley, T. C. (1991). Thematic preorganizers and the reading comprehension of tenth-grade world literature students. Reading Research & Instruction, 31(1), 43-53.

Coiro, J., & Dobler, E. (2007). Exploring the online reading comprehension strategies used by sixth-grade skilled readers to search for and locate information on the internet. Reading Research Quarterly, 42(2), 214-257.

Darch, C. B., Carnine, D. W., & Kammeenui, E. J. (1986). The role of graphic organizers and social structure in content area instruction. Journal of Reading Behavior, 18(4), 275-295.

De La Paz, S. (2007). Managing cognitive demands for writing: Comparing the effects of instructional components in strategy instruction. Reading & Writing Quarterly, 23(3), 249-266.

Evans, S. W., Pelham, W., & Grudberg, M. V. (1994). The efficacy of notetaking to improve behavior and comprehension of adolescents with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Exceptionality, 5(1), 1-17.

Garcia-Mila, M. (2007). Developmental change in notetaking during scientific inquiry. International Journal of Science Education, 29(8), 1035-1058.

Guinee, K., Eagleton, M., & Hall, T. E. (2003). Adolescents' internet search strategies: Drawing upon familiar cognitive paradigms when accessing electronic information sources. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 29(3), 363-374.

Guinee, K., & Eagleton, M. B. (2006). Spinning straw into gold: Transforming information into knowledge during web-based research. English Journal, 95(4), 46-52.

Herl, H. E., O'Neil, H. F. J., Chung, G. K. W. K., & Schacter, J. (1999). Reliability and validity of a computer-based knowledge mapping system to measure content understanding. Computers in Human Behavior, 15(3-4), 315-333.

Horton, S., Lovitt, T., & Christensen, S. (1991). Notetaking from textbooks: Effects of a columnar format on three categories of secondary students. Exceptionality: A Research Journal, 2(1), 18-40.

Horton, S. V., Lovitt, T. C., Givens, A., & Nelson, R. (1989). Teaching social studies to high school students with academic handicaps in a mainstreamed setting: Effects of a computerized study guide. Journal ofLearning Disabilities, 22(2), 102-107.

Idol-Maestas, L. (1985). Getting ready to read: Guided probing for poor comprehenders. Learning Disability Quarterly, 8(4), 243-254.

Kim, A. H., Vaughn, S., & Wanzek, J. (2004). Graphic organizers and their effects on the reading comprehension of students with LD: A synthesis of research. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 37(2), 105-118.

Kooy, T. (1992). The effect of graphic advance organizers on math and science comprehension with high school special education students. B.C. Journal of Special Education, 16(2), 101-111.

Kuiper, E., Volman, K., & Terwel, J. (2004). The internet as an information resource in education: A review of the literature. Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

McCrory Wallace, R., Kupperman, J., Krajcik, J., & Soloway, E. (2000). Science on the web: Students online in a sixth-grade classroom. The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 9(1), 75-104.

McNabb, M. L., Hassel, B., & Steiner, L. (2000). Literacy learning on the net: An exploratory study. Oak Brook, IL: North Central Regional Educational Laboratory.

Meltzer, L. (2007). Executive function in education: From theory to practice. New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Moore, D. W., & Readence, J. E. (1984). A quantitative and qualitative review of graphic organizer research. Journal of Educational Research, 78(1), 11-17.

Novak, J. D. (1990). Concept maps and vee diagrams: Two metacognitive tools to facilitate meaningful learning. Instructional Science, 19(1), 29-52.

Puntambekar, S., & Goldstein, J. (2007). Effect of visual representation of the conceptual structure of the domain on science learning and navigation in a hypertext environment. Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, 16(4), 429-459.

Robinson, D. H., Katayama, A. D., Beth, A., Odom, S., Hsieh, Y. P., & Vanderveen, A. (2006). Increasing text comprehension and graphic note taking using a partial graphic organizer. The Journal of Educational Research, 100(2), 103-111.

Royer, R., & Royer, J. (2004). Comparing hand drawn and computer generated concept mapping. Journal of Computers in Mathematics and Science Technology, 23(1), 67-81.

Shin, E. C., Schallert, D. L., & Savenye, W. C. (1994). Effects of learner control, advisement, and prior knowledge on young students' learning in a hypertext environment. Educational Technology Research and Development, 42(1), 33-46.

Swanson, H. L., & Deshler, D. (2003). Instructing adolescents with learning disabilities: Converting a meta-analysis to practice. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 36(2), 124-135.

Townsend, M. A. R., & Clarihew, A. (1989). Facilitating children's comprehension through the use of advanced organizers. Journal of Reading Behavior, 21(1), 15-31.

Troia, G. A., & Graham, S. (2002). The effectiveness of a highly explicit, teacher-directed strategy instruction routine: Changing the writing performance of students with learning disabilities. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 35(4), 290-305.

Troia, G. A., Graham, S., & Harris, K. R. (1999). Teaching students with learning disabilities to mindfully plan when writing. Exceptional Children, 65(2), 235-252.

Willerman, M., & Mac Harg, R. A. (1991). The concept map as an advance organizer. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 28(8), 705-712.

Scholarly reviews and expert opinions:

Cassidy, J. (1989). Using graphic organizers to develop critical thinking. Gifted Child Today, 12(6), 34-36.

Dalton, B., & Grisham, D. L. (2001). Teaching students to evaluate internet information critically. Reading Online, 5(5). Retrieved June 23, 2009, from

Dawson, P., & Guare, R. (2004). Executive skills in children and adolescents: A practical guide to assessment and intervention. New York, NY: The Guilford Press.

Dye, G. A. (2000). Graphic organizers to the rescue! Helping students link - and remember - information. Teaching Exceptional Children, 32(3), 72-76.

Eagleton, M., & Guinee, K. (2002). Strategies for supporting student internet inquiry. New England Reading Association Journal, 38(2), 39-47.

Eagleton, M. B., & Dobler, E. (2006). Reading the web: Strategies for internet inquiry. New York: Guilford Press.

Eagleton, M. B., Guinee, K., & Langlais, K. (2003). Teaching internet literacy strategies: The hero inquiry project. Voices from the Middle, 10(3), 28-35.

Egan, M. (1999). Reflections on effective use of graphic organizers. Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, 42(8), 641-645.

Frey, N., & Fisher, D. (2007). Reading for information in elementary school: Content literacy strategies to build comprehension. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Merrill/Prentice Hall.

Henry, L. A. (2006). SEARCHing for an answer: The critical role of new literacies while reading on the internet. The Reading Teacher, 59(7), 614-627.

Hughes, C. A., & Suritsky, S. K. (1993). Notetaking skills and strategies for students with learning disabilities. Preventing School Failure, 38(1), 7-11.

Ives, B., & Hoy, C. (2003). Graphic organizers applied to higher-level secondary mathematics. Learning Disabilities Research & Practice, 18(1), 36-51.

Kafai, Y., & Bates, M. J. (1997). Internet web-searching instruction in the elementary classroom: Building a foundation for information literacy. School Library Media Quarterly, 25(2), 103-111.

Mastropieri, M. A., Scruggs, T. E., & Graetz, J. E. Reading comprehension instruction for secondary students: Challenges for struggling readers and teachers. Learning Disability Quarterly, 26(1), 103-116.

Merkley, D. M., & Jefferies, D. (2001). Guidelines for implementing a graphic organizer. The Reading Teacher, 54(4), 350-357.

Mosco, M. (2005). Getting the information graphically. Arts and Activities, 138(1), 44-44.

Novak, J. D. & Canas, A. J. (2008). The theory underlying concept maps and how to construct them. Technical Report IHMC CmapTools 2006-01 Rev 01-2008, Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition.. Retrieved September 8, 2009 from

Rankin, V. (1999). The thoughtful researcher: Teaching the research process to middle school students. Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, Inc..

Rock, M. L. (2004). Graphic organizers: Tools to foster behavior literacy and foster emotional competency. Intervention in School and Clinic, 40(1), 10-37.

Rose, D., & Rose, K. (2007). Executive function processes: A curriculum-based intervention. In L. Meltzer (Ed.), Executive function in education (pp. 287-308). New York: Guilford Press.

Sandieson, R. (2006). Pathfinding in the research forest: The pearl harvesting method for effective information retrieval. Education and Training in Developmental Disabilities, 41(4), 401-409.

Scardamalia, M., & Bereiter, C. (1991). Higher levels of agency for children in knowledge building: A challenge for the design of new knowledge media. The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 1(1), 37-68.

Schachter, J., Chung, G., & Shorr, A. (1998). Children’s internet searching on complex problems: Performance and process analysis. Journal of the American Society for Information Science, 49(9), 840-849.

Sorapure, M., Inglesby, P., & Yatchisin, G. (1998). Web literacy: Challenges and opportunities for research in a new medium. Computers and Composition, 15(3), 409-424.

Strangman, N., & Hall, T. E. (2002). Graphic organizers. Wakefield, MA: National Center on Accessing the General Curriculum.

Strangman, N., Hall, T. E., & Meyer, A. (2003). Graphic organizers with UDL. Wakefield, MA: National Center on Accessing the General Curriculum.

Sutherland-Smith, W. (2002). Weaving the literacy web: Changes in reading from page to screen. Reading Teacher, 55(7), 662-669.

Last Updated: 02/01/2011

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