ADHD in the College Classroom: Making the Most of Your Freshman Year

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ADHD in the college classroom can many times be a difficult transition for young people coming from high school. So many things change from moving from the high school classroom to the college environment.

While colleges provide much more freedom and opportunity, they also create ample opportunity for distraction to ruin your studies. Resultantly, it’s not surprising that many students find the transition from high school to college difficult.

Many students find freshman year challenging even without factoring in ADHD symptoms. There are many other freshmen year issues that are challenging enough on their own. In order to succeed in college, students need support along the way. For young people coming from high school, many don’t need ADHD in the college classroom as another distraction.

How can you best help your son or daughter going off to college, though? You have helped them and seen them graduate and get into a good school.

Now, you need to get them set off on a good start. In order to do that well, let’s look at some resources to help you best manage ADHD in the college classroom.

#1 Make The Most of College Accommodations

Colleges know that starting out as a freshman proves challenging to most students. All colleges want their students to succeed. They want you to continue coming to class, eventually graduate, and become a successful alumnus. They all know most students need help to get there, though.

Many colleges provide as many student accommodations as they can. They definitely provide accommodations for students with learning disabilities or issues that might limit their chances at success such as ADHD.

In order to best tackle ADHD in the college classroom, you should recognize that you need ADHD accommodations in college. Unfortunately, some students feel shame surrounding requesting special accommodations. There should be no reason to feel this way, though.

The reality is that many students require accommodations for various reasons. Again, colleges provide accommodations because they want to see you succeed. To make the best of your time at college, apply for accommodations before your freshman year begins.

Meet with a college advisor or counselor to get an idea of what accommodations your school provides. Accommodations can come in a number of varieties including note taking, opportunities for different lecture presentations, or test taking options. Be sure you have a good idea of the recommended accommodations for college students with ADHD at your school.

Then do everything you can to make sure you make the most of the accommodations provided. Make sure you start early before your school year begins. Do your research into what documents will be required for you to request and secure needed accommodations.

#2 Make The Most of Your Own Support Network

Many people describe college as a community. College can style itself as a community of peers or a community of friends or simply a community of people on a similar journey. In each of these, though, community plays a key role. College involves you as an individual but it also involves groups working together.

This idea provides a valuable lesson for succeeding with ADHD in the college classroom. This shows you that you need a community to support you: your own support network.

Many students might see college as a chance to escape or get away from family or their hometown. You should avoid this reasoning as much as possible. You need your support network now more than ever.

Who should be in your support network? You should have friends that will keep you accountable and check in on you to make sure you are staying on track. Research has shown that college friendships can have a large affect on student success.

You should also have family members that care about you as part of your network. Studies have also shown that kids with supportive parents are more likely to succeed.

When you get to college, you should also identify mentors and professors that you can get to know and confide in. College professors can help guide your learning and help connect you with resources to find success with ADHD in the college classroom. You should seek out their input as much as possible.

Ultimately, your own support network, those that support you from home and those you connect with at school, will help you much more than you will ever realize.

#3 Make The Most of Online and Other Self Prep Resources

Much about preparing to go to college involves studying and learning about what college is all about. College has the potential to be such a unique experience that adapting to it oftentimes requires some preparation.

In order to find success with ADHD in the college classroom, you might need to do some additional legwork. The time you spend doing research and obtaining resources, though, will prove to be worth it.

Not only do you want to utilize accommodations provided by your school and make use of your own support network, you also should make use of other quality online self prep resources. We recommend doing some research of your own into what works and what doesn’t. Look into other students’ experiences with ADHD in the college classroom. Find out what helped and what didn’t.

To get you started, here are a few quality college prep resources that we strongly recommend:

Make the Most of ADHD in the College Classroom

ADHD in the college classroom doesn’t have to be a barrier to hold you back from success. With the right preparation and resources, you can make ADHD in the college classroom work for you.

We hope that we have provided some tools and resources in this article to help set you on a right course for college. Take these tips and tools and continue to build on them as you or your child approaches their first days in college.