Learning Disability: Am I ready for college?

We all mature at different speeds and in different ways. As we grow older and more mature, we may find ourselves more able to cope with things that limit us when we are young.

A student with a learning disability needs to assess his or her readiness for college.

Many students these days, and for many different reasons, look at junior colleges as a way to seque into a four year school and to prepare for the rigors of getting a degree.

A student with learning disabilities needs to be honest in his or her self assessment as a part of the college preparation process.

Do you understand your learning disability?

  • Can you explain it to others, such as your teachers?

  • When was your disability diagnosed?

  • What kind of grades do you make in high school? What is your current GPA?

  • Are you enrolled in any Advanced Placement classes?

  • Are you taking college prep classes, or special education courses?

  • Do you understand How you learn?

    • From listening

    • From reading and other visual activities

    • Do you need the material read to you?

    • In which subjects do you perform well?

    • Which are difficult for you?

    • Do you study?

    • How are you at finishing special assignments?

    • Can you work well on your own or are you better iin a group?

    • Are you able to keep at something if you don't understand it at first?

    • What are you good in: i.e. computers, sports

    • What plans do you have for the future?

    • Have you researched the skills and competencies you would need to pursue your planned career goals?
    • Note: I ask this as a question for you to think about. Over 50% of all college students change their major within their first two years. I do suggest though, that you think about and research areas of study that interest you and that will fit with your abilities. For instance, if you are not good at geometry, architecture might not be a good career choice for you.

    • About your disability:

      • Are you aware of what your disability is and how it impacts your learning?

      • Are you able to explain your disability and discuss special accommodations you might need?

      • Are you aware of special curriculum needs?

    • Assess your academic skills, habits and performance

    • Written Skills

      • Can you express yourself clearly in writing?

      • Are you able to write using vocabulary words appropriate to your age and grade level?

      • Do you frequently misspell words?

      • Are you able to organize your thoughts and express them in a logical way?

      • Are people able to read what you write?

      • Do you capitalize letters?

      • Is your handwriting consistent?

      • Can you write a 45 minute in-class essay and receive a grade of B or better?

      • Are you able to construct sentences and paragraphs using correct grammar and punctuation?

    • Verbal Skills

      • Do you have good conversational skills?

      • Do you communicate well with others?

      • Is your speech articulate and logical?

      • Can you give a speech in front of a class?

      • Can you understand what others are saying in a conversation?

    • Reading

      • Are you able to complete your reading assignments within a reasonable time?

      • Do you have difficulty decoding words?

      • Do you mix up letters?

      • How easy (or hard) is it for you to understand what you read?

      • Can you remember what you have read?

    • Mathematics

      • Which areas of math are difficult for you? easy?

      • Is geometry difficult for you?

      • Do you mix up letters?
    • Are you easily distracted, do you have difficulty following instructions, or finishing an assignment?

      Can you concentrate in class, remain organized, and remember what you have learned?

      Ask yourself these questions and honestly assess your skills, maturity and readiness for college. Familiarize yourself with the special services offered by the schools of your choice. The level of services offered at colleges fall into four categories, and you will want to choose a school with a program level that will meet your needs.

      Calendar of college prep tasks for students diagnosed with learning disabilities

      Campus visits for students with learning disabilities

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