Universal Design is a strategy for making products, environments, operational systems, and services welcoming and usable to the most diverse range of people possible. Its key principles are simplicity, flexibility, and efficiency. When American Job Centers apply Universal Design principles, we are working together towards a world-class service environment to help all Americans get training and find jobs.


WorkforceGPS Resources

  • Universal Design: A Customer Centered Approach (Abridged Version) - In planning, Universal Design is one way to provide exemplary service in American Job Centers. Design thinking for innovation across the workforce system has been found to benefit job seekers with a wide range of learning styles, intelligence, and physical mobility to help meet customer’s needs more efficiently. This link includes a webcast on how Universal Design can be achieved through applying the methods of Customer Centered Design.
  • Universal Design Web Chat - On November 1, 2017 ETA launched its first live WorkforceGPS webchat focused on the topic of Universal Design. ETA Workforce Analyst David Jones joined 28 participants from across the country to engage in an online chat to help increase awareness and problem solve. This link includes the transcript from that event.

Design Thinking to Maximize Inclusion

  • Accessibility Cohort Resources - To support the Workforce Innovation Cohort on Disability and Employment, the Accessibility Team (representing five states) recently addressed the following challenge question: How might we further maximize physical and programmatic access for customers with disabilities using the services of an American Job Center
  • Universal Design for Learning - CAST developed resources for Universal Design for learning through application of more scientific insights into understanding how learning occurs. What we know about the brain can help us learn variability on why, what and how different people learn. The link includes insightful research on how we can modify the design of training to accommodate. 
  • What is Universal Design and How Can It Benefit a Business - ODEP-authored article by Chris Button, Supervisory Policy Advisor, examines Universal Design as it relates to communication, technology, and the physical environment.

Section 508 and Section 188 Resources

  • Resources for Section 508 Compliance - Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act mandates that all electronic and information technology developed, procured, maintained, or used by the federal government be accessible to people with disabilities. This resource link published by New Editions Consulting, Inc. for VR programs contains federal resources and archived webinars on universal design and practices as it relates to Section 508.
  • Resources for Section 188 Compliance – Section 188 implements the nondiscrimination and equal opportunity provisions of WIOA. This resource link includes examples of promising practices that can help promote equal access for individuals with disabilities to the American Job Center system.