High School vs. College: Working Successfully with Learning Differences
What is the Difference Between High School and College for Students with Learning Differences?
High School: The school district is responsible for identifying a student’s disability and creating the appropriate environment for the student to learn as documented in the I.E.P.
College: The student must identify his/her disability to the college and to advocate for the necessary accommodations from the disability resource center and faculty. The I.E.P. does not
High School: A student is eligible for accommodations based upon a diagnosis.
College: An updated psycho-educational assessment, typically including a WAIS test and an
achievement battery (typically, although this is determined by each school) is necessary for a student to qualify for the necessary accommodations.
High School: Parents act as primary advocates and receive official reports from the school.
College: Students must be able to self-advocate for his/her needs and may or may not allow contact between the school and parents.
High School: The faculty and school may establish study halls and study times.
College: Students must be able to plan and manage their time independently and/or seek out any necessary assistance.
High School: Attendance in school is mandatory and monitored.
College: Colleges and professors vary on attendance requirements. While some believe that it is a student’s responsibility to attend, others factor it into the student’s grade.
High School: Schools may be required to adjust a course to meet a student’s needs.
College: Course adjustments or reduced course loads are at the discretion of the college.
Adapted from sources from the University of North Carolina and the University of New Hampshire.