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Differences Between High School and College

High School
Teachers check your completed homework and will likely include that information as part of your grade
Professors might not always check completed homework, and it frequently is not a part of the grading criteria.
Teachers remind you of incomplete work.
Professors do not remind you of incomplete work.
Teachers approach you if they believe you need assistance.
Professors expect you to approach them if you need assistance.
Teachers are trained in teaching methods to assist in imparting knowledge to students.
Professors have been trained as “experts” in their fields and might not have as complete a background in best teaching practices.
Teachers will likely use a textbook and will present information in a way that coordinates with the textbook.
Professors might not follow a textbook too closely, if at all. They will give illustrations, provide background information, and discuss research relating to the topic you are studying, or amplify the textbook with additional information.
Outside research is generally used for special projects and reports. The guidelines are usually quite specific and objectives are related to the skills of researching, as well as the acquisition of information.
The use of outside reading and research to enhance your knowledge of course content is expected. Some direction is provided with regard to good sources, but research skills are assumed to be in place.
Grades are given for most assigned work and weighted relatively evenly.
Grades on tests, exams, and major papers provide most of the course grade. Exam grades are usually weighted more heavily in the final grade.
Graduation will occur as long as you have passed all required courses with a grade of “D” or higher.
Graduation will occur only if your average in all classes meets the departmental or college standard (usually 2.0 or higher).
The school year runs from September to June. Vacations are roughly a week in length and occur at regular intervals.
The school year is divided into two 15-week semesters, plus a week following each semester for exams. Vacations are less frequent.
Attendance is taken.
Professors might not take attendance, but are still likely to know if you are around.
Make up tests are frequently available when you have failed a test or quiz.
Make up tests are most often not available to replace failing grades. You are responsible for making arrangements to take tests missed due to illness.
Teachers will occasionally rearrange test dates to minimize conflict with school events.
Test scheduling is usually listed in the syllabus or course outline and is not open to change, regardless of college events.
You might study outside of class as little as one or two hours each week.
You are expected to study one to two hours outside of class for EACH hour of class.
You are expected to read short assignments that are often discussed and often re-taught in class.
You will be assigned substantial amounts of reading, which might not be directly discussed in class.
Your courses are determined by a predetermined curriculum and according to your level of skill.
You determine your courses with your advisor, based on the requirements of your major.
Most of your classes are arranged for you.
How many classes you take is up to you and your advisor. In order to be considered full-time, you must take at least twelve credits. It is not necessary to take a full course load each semester.
The teachers monitor your progress and recommend adjustments as needed. Curricula may be modified to meet your needs.
Curricula will not be modified to meet your needs. You will be expected to demonstrate the same level of understanding of course material as all of the other students in the course.
Your Individual Education Program (IEP) prescribes the services, including remediation, which you will receive.
In order to receive support services, you must disclose your disability to the Learning Specialist or Disability Coordinator on campus. Remediation is not usually a part of the plan.
Class schedules are rigid, with fairly constant supervision.
Class times vary throughout the day and evening.
Classes meet daily, for six hours a day, thirty hours each week.
You usually will spend between 12 and 20 hours in class each week.
Testing is frequent and usually covers relatively small amounts of information.
Testing is much less frequent and will cover larger quantities of material.
You need permission to participate in extracurricular activities.
Your time is your own to organize. If you wish to participate in extracurricular activities, you may do so.
A committee of professionals and your parents works to develop your IEP or 504 Plan. You may be invited to participate, but the decision- making power belongs to this team.
Your parents are not involved in the development of your 504 Accommodation Plan unless you request their involvement. You and the Learning Specialist, possibly with input from your professors, work together to design your accommodations.