College Visits for Students with Learning Disabilities

Learning Disabilities, College Visits

It is a good idea to visit colleges that interest you, starting with the summer before your junior year in high school.

Try to visit while classes are in session and students are on the campus.

If high school spring break, for instance, occurs in a different week than your colleges of interest, that is a great time to schedule a visit at those campuses.

Most college web sites contain information about visiting and touring their campus, and you should definitely take a tour.

Some schools offer "virtual" tours of the campus, dorms, surrounding area. Take a look.

Call to arrange your in-person visit, or sign up online.

Arrange ahead of time to meet with professors in your particular areas of academic interest, if you have decided what those might be.

If you are an athlete planning on playing sports in college, you should have been in contact with the appropriate coaches by this time. Arrange to meet them in person. Keep track of all names, dates, conversations and contact information.

  • Your visit will have two purposes: meeting the special services providers, and meeting with coaches whom you may have contacted, or who have contacted you.

  • You will want to coordinate your visit with both departments.

  • Be sure to meet with admissions personnel and support service providers and administrators. Gather brochures about the school's support services.

    In addition, you should attempt to talk with:

  • faculty in your areas of interest

  • students
  • Things to do on campus

  • Take notes

  • Take guided tour: Note The quality of these tours depends on the degree of interest and the knowledge of your tour guide, frequently a student.

  • Be sure you see the dorms

  • Attend a class

  • Eat a meal on campus

  • Visit with students

  • Drive around the campus, and the outside boundaries of the campus

  • Take a look at the neighborhoods around the campus in terms of aesthetics, convenience, stores, safety

  • Take pictures (If you visit several campuses in one week, your memories will blur.)

  • Look for printed information, videos, or catalogs to take with you. Most of this information is on the campus web site, but printed info is great to have.

  • Try to remember the reason for carefully choosing your colleges of interest. "Cool" campuses, or the prettiest campus, may not necessarily be the best place for you.

  • After you return home, write thank you notes to everyone you met. This, by the way, is a marketing technique used by every successful salesperson in the world.

    And, speaking about learning about colleges:

    Attend college fairs in your town or given by your high school district.

    There you can visit with representatives from each school participating in the College Fair.

  • Get names and business cards of College Fair contacts

  • Take notes

  • Ask questions

  • Ask about special services, and ask for contact names

  • Remember your organizational tools? Use them to help with organization.

    • Accordion File

    • Or, filing cabinet

    • File folders

    • Note book

    • Day planner

    • Large, multi-month calendar

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