Ask the Experts

College Survival Guide

Practical, essential tips for college students with ADHD or learning disabilities like dyslexia.

Selecting courses and registering for classes can be thorns in any student’s side — but especially so for a student with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In her book Survival Guide for College Students with ADD or LD, author Kathleen G. Nadeau, Ph.D., lists these practical and helpful tips:

  • Take advantage of early registration.
  • Talk to other students to find out which teachers are best for which courses.
  • Make use of the drop/add periods, the first week (or two) of the semester when you’re allowed to change classes. If, after the first few meetings, you find a class isn’t working for you, drop it and pick another.
  • Talk to your professors about their knowledge of ADHD and LD. Select those who are most informed.
  • Review the syllabus of each course after the first class, and evaluate whether the reading and writing assignments are possible for you, given the rest of your course load.
  • Avoid large lectures. Instead, sign up for small classes with lots of group discussion.
  • Register for more classes than you plan to take. This way, you can drop a class without having to rearrange your whole schedule.

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