Expectation and support services may be different at the University level than they were in High School. Students and their parents can prepare for University by reviewing the tips and suggestions listed below. Whether you are attending Carleton, another University, or a College, the tips will be helpful for you.
Twice each year the Paul Menton Centre and Algonquin College’s Centre for Students with Disabilities run Make the CUT (College / University Transition), a transition program helping high school students with LD learn more about how to successfully prepare for post-secondary studies.
The keys to successful transition to university for first-year students with disabilities are advance preparation and active utilization of existing support services. However, advance preparation and accessing support services require knowledge of anticipated needs and the existence of these support services. To this end, we recommend the following:
- Start transition planning with your parents and guidance counsellor at least one year before applying to university.
- Research through the Internet or other resources potential academic programs, universities and the kinds of accommodations and services they offer, funding sources, and adaptive technology that are available to meet your needs. NEADS EdLinks provides online information on services for students with disabilities/special needs to over 100 colleges and universities in Canada.
- Ensure that you have current documentation on your disability. Most post-secondary institutions will have common documentation requirements; however, it is wise to contact each institution for information about specific documentation requirements.
- Attend PMC INTRO, a half-day morning session offered to new and returning students with disabilities and their parents on the Tuesday after Labour Day.
- Anticipate possible accommodation needs when attending university. If you do not know enough about the university environment to anticipate your needs adequately, contact a coordinator at the Paul Menton Centre to discuss what to realistically expect in university and what you will need to scaffold the transition.
- Once you have been accepted into an academic program at Carleton University, consider booking a tour of the Campus. This will give you a good indications of what support services are available should you need them. Also, consider making an appointment to see a coordinator at the PMC to discuss your needs. We assist in the transition process by providing essential information and support services in response to anticipated needs.
- Attend a Welcome Seminar, a one-day session including a campus tour offered to new students and their parents during the month of July and August (including some weekends).
- Participate in a high school to post-secondary transition program for students with learning disabilities such as Make the CUT.