Using the 7 Principles of Universal Design for Specifying Windows and Glass Doors

Sponsored by Milgard Windows & Doors

Learning Objectives:

  1. Discuss changing demographics and who benefits from universal design.
  2. Describe universal design and how it differs from accessibility.
  3. List the 7 principles of universal design for windows and glass doors and give examples of each.
  4. Identify the etiquette for working with universal design clients, economics, and certifications.


1 GBCI CE Hour
AAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
AAPEI 1 Structured Learning Hour
MAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA.
This course can be self-reported to the NSAA
NWTAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
OAA 1 Learning Hour
SAA 1 Hour of Core Learning
This course can be self-reported to the AIBC, as per their CE Guidelines.
This course is approved as a Structured Course
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
Approved for structured learning
Approved for Core Learning
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA
Course may qualify for Learning Hours with NWTAA
Course eligible for OAA Learning Hours
This course is approved as a core course
This course can be self-reported for Learning Units to the Architectural Institute of British Columbia
This test is no longer available for credit

The world is changing quickly, both in demographics and in our awareness and acceptance of changing demographics. While homes and products were once designed for easy use primarily by persons with full abilities, there is growing awareness that homes and products should serve people of all abilities whenever possible. This trend started with legislation to make public buildings accessible to disabled people, but has now expanded to include use by many people of all ages and abilities, both physical and mental. This concept is known as universal design. This course examines the difference between universal design and accessibility required by law, and lists the types of people of varied abilities who benefit from universal design, particularly as it applies to homes. We then take a look at the 7 Principles of Universal Design, as developed by the North Carolina State University’s College of Design, and explore examples of each, from windows set low enough to offer views to a person in a wheelchair, to sliding doors that open with a touch to accommodate those with arthritis or other challenges. Finally, we look at the business side of universal design and discussing the principles with clients.

Universal Design


Milgard<sup>®</sup> Windows & Doors Since 1962, Milgard® Windows & Doors has manufactured superior, top-quality windows and patio doors backed with an industry-leading Full Lifetime Warranty. Whether you need vinyl, fiberglass, wood, or aluminum, Milgard has the right product to beautifully reflect your vision. With resources available for new construction and remodeling projects, you’ll find Revit files, AutoCAD drawings, and SketchUp designs ready for your use on


Originally published in February 2020