The College Try: Helping ADHD Teens Succeed in College

Use these strategies to give your ADHD student the skills, independence, resources, and motivation he needs to make the grade at college.

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Plan Ahead

"Poor time management trips up many ADHD students in college," says Jodi Sleeper-Triplett, an ADHD coach based in Virginia, who works with kids, teens, and college students. "Have your student choose a planner—whether it's an online version, a PDA, or a traditional paper format—and practice scheduling her day before she heads off to college."

It's vital that students be able to schedule—and execute—daily activities on their own, says Patricia Quinn, M.D., a developmental pediatrician, who specializes in kids and teens with ADD, and author of ~ADD and the College Student~ (American Psychological Association). "Have your student pay attention to managing time around life activities, such as socializing and extracurriculars, not just around academics," says Quinn. Because parents often do a lot for their ADHD kids—grocery shopping, laundry—students aren't aware of how time-consuming managing day-to-day necessities can be.

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