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Moving On from High School to College

When students graduate from high school, they are closing one chapter of their lives and are preparing to open a new one. For students who are bound for college, this newest chapter will open up a world of experiences in which they are faced with an independence that they are not accustomed to. This step into adulthood also has them facing responsibilities that they did not face in high school. Although this is an exciting time, it can also be a bit frightening for both the incoming college freshman and his or her parents. This is particularly true when the student is moving away from home to attend college.

When a student attends college, whether locally or in a different state, he or she will face academic changes. These changes are numerous; however, one of the most important keys to success is responsibility. In high school, the student's education was structured by the school, and both parents and teachers played an active role in guiding the student's studies and helping them complete assignments. In college this is no longer the case, as the student is in charge of managing his or her own time. He or she is responsible for attending class, as well as studying for tests and completing assignments. This forces the student to set their priorities in terms of studying and free time. Teaching styles will also differ significantly, with college instructors often lecturing for lengthy periods of time with the expectation that students will take notes as needed. College professors, unlike school teachers, are not responsible for tending to students who are having trouble in class. This means that if a student requires guidance, he or she will need to initiate contact with the professor. College will also present the student with a new environment that is highly social. For students living on campus, there will be numerous activities that must be balanced with studying.

When living on campus, students are faced with the additional stress of being away from family and their comfort zone. This can create feelings of homesickness, and may even lead to depression in some. Creating new friends and developing a social structure at school will help with the transition into college. In addition to studying, the student will also want to participate in new activities, such as joining a club. Parents must also make adjustments when their child leaves to attend college.

Academic Changes

Social Opportunities

Responsibilities and Challenges

Leaving Home