What Colleges are Best for Kids with Learning Disabilities?

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My son, 18,  has ADD & PDD-NOS and has been in special ed since preschool. He is very disorganized. He needs assistance to stay on task.

Where can I get information on colleges that are best for kids with learning disabilities?

Start Your Research

Have you done any research on this question? We can help you get started, but you need to answer some questions first.

  • What is the nature of your child’s learning disabilities?
  • When will he graduate from high school?
  • Does he want to go to college?
  • What are his interests?
  • Are you looking for a college in your state (in-state tuition)?

Start on the Wrightslaw College – Continuing and Higher Education page here –  http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/college.index.htm

This page has links to articles, videos, podcasts, directories of colleges with programs for kids with learning disabilities, and helpful information.

Involve Your Child in Planning

Your son needs to be involved in the planning and research.

Take a look at this video.

From Where I Sit is a powerful video series of eight CSU students with disabilities who share their experiences in the college classroom.

They tell their stories by answering five questions:

1.    What is your disability?
2.    What made you decide to come to college?
3.    What is it like in the classroom?
4.    What do you have to do to keep up with the class?
5.    What suggestions can you offer to faculty that will make their classroom more accessible?

Listen to this Podcast.

Transition from High School to College for Students with Learning Disabilities.

Use a Directory.

Colleges with Programs for Students with Learning Disabilities is here: http://www.college-scholarships.com/learning_disabilities.htm

College Planning for Students with Learning Disabilities is here: http://www.kidsource.com/kidsource/content3/college.planning.LD.html

There is a huge amount of good information on the Internet.

There are also educational consultants who can help you find a college that will be a good fit.

If you would like to use a consultant, the Yellow Pages will help you find someone in your area to contact.

More Options

College program options for students with disabilities are growing, but many programs are expensive.

Some schools offer a transition year in which students earn transferable credits while preparing for college life. Other degree-granting institutions for the learning disabled include summer programs for college-bound students.

“Federal law requires all colleges to provide some accommodations for the learning disabled — tutoring, for example, or extra time on exams — and with the rapid increase in students with diagnosed learning disabilities, many mainstream colleges and universities are trying to serve them better.” – from Learning with Disabilities (NY Times)


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6 Comments on "What Colleges are Best for Kids with Learning Disabilities?"

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I also know a school in NYC for children with learning disabilities, named Aaron School. Teachers and staff are very supportive and responsible. They offer school programs at very affordable rates.

If you call a $60,000 tuition affordable then unicorns do exist!!!

You might also want to check my Conquer College with LD website for informative articles re: the high school to college transition, and what makes it so risky.

In addition, see the Smart Kids with LD website. I am their college correspondent, after having been a college Learning Specialist since 1993. Smart Kids is a great resource!

We have this same difficult question in the UK – and it’s certainly true here that not all schools and colleges provide equally effective support for dyslexia. Sometimes the school appears willing to help and confident that they can support your child…but in practice this support is not always provided, or if it IS provided, it is often not effective enough.

My 12 year old son has PDD-NOS and ADHD, too, and is very disorganized. I’ll be in your shoes in a few years. I heard of a college in VT called Landmark College which is supposed to help college students with disabilities.

Good luck!