Helping Your Neurodiverse Student Apply to College

Helping Your Neurodiverse Student Apply to College

Helping Your Neurodiverse Student Apply to College

Helping Your Neurodiverse Student Apply to College

As a parent or guardian of a neurodiverse high school senior, you understand the unique challenges that come with the college application process. This time of year, guidance counselors are gearing up for their busy season, and so are we at SOS4Students. The college application process can test both yours and your child’s executive function skills, making it crucial to stay organized and on track.

Challenges Faced by Neurodiverse Students

Many neurodiverse students, despite their intelligence and potential, struggle with basic organizational and study skills. They may find it difficult to manage their time, prioritize tasks, and stay focused. These challenges are often made greater by the stress of the college application process.

How You Can Support Your Child

Get Organized: Start by listing the colleges your child is interested in applying to. Gather key information such as application deadlines, required test scores, and essay prompts. Using a planning table, map out deadlines and due dates for each task. This helps break down the overwhelming process into manageable steps.

Plan and Prioritize: Identify smaller steps needed to complete the applications. This could include narrowing down college choices, preparing for standardized tests, requesting letters of recommendation, and selecting essay prompts. Set clear, concrete goals to keep the process moving forward and avoid last-minute panic.

Encourage Reflective Thinking: Help your child develop metacognition, or awareness of their own thought processes, by asking reflective questions:

  • What’s your plan?
  • What materials do you need?
  • What might get in the way?
  • How can I support you?

Build Study and Time Management Skills: Effective study skills are critical for absorbing information and producing quality work. Encourage practices such as:

  • Chunking and Pacing (breaking down complex texts into manageable pieces)
  • Active Listening (focusing on relevant information and understanding it)
  • Close Reading (paying attention to both the content and the author’s intent)
  • Note Taking (using methods such as the Cornell Method to organize information).

Time management is equally important. Teach your child to plan broadly (yearly), then get more detailed (quarterly, weekly, daily). This helps students feel more organized, less rushed, and less stressed.

How SOS4Students Can Help

At SOS4Students, we understand these challenges and are here to help. Our Jumpstart Your College Essays program is designed to support neurodiverse students through the college application process. We provide personalized coaching to help students apply to colleges and write compelling college essays. Our goal is to equip students with the skills they need to succeed academically and beyond.

Students who struggle with executive function skills can benefit from our targeted support. Our coaches work with students to develop personalized plans, build foundational skills, and manage the stress of the college application process. We believe every student has the potential to succeed with the right tools and guidance.

For more information on Jumpstart Your College Essays and how we can support your child, contact SOS4Students today. Together, we can help you and your child navigate the college application process with confidence and ease.

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