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Executive Functioning Tools and Tips for College Students

Updated: 4 days ago


What can be done this summer to prepare students with executive functioning deficits for the independence that they’re going to have at college?


Students need to know how to input their schedule, with all their activities, into a calendar.

  1. This includes chores, meals, and study time!

  2. When something changes, they can look at their day and easily make changes.

  1. Students need one large To-Do list that includes all the classes they have so they have their due dates for every class in one place.

  2. Then they need to break down the work into steps and plan when they’re going to do the work.

  3. They need a flexible To-Do List so when things change, they go back in and change update the list.

  1. Learning to create a folder for each class and then make more folders within that folder for:

    1. Class notes

    2. Project notes

    3. Study notes

  2. Make sure to save often and understand how to save the files in folders so they can easily find their work and things don’t go missing.

  1. They can write class notes with the Apple Pen so that they are saved electronically.

  2. The program syncs to the computer and phone so notes are never lost.

  3. They can:

    1. Download any PDFs and reading they have to the iPad.

    2. Take a screenshot picture from their phone and put them into their notes.

Get the professor’s approval first.

  1. Temi records and then for a small fee it will transcribe the recording.

  2. You can tap on the transcription and go directly to that point in the lecture to review what was covered.

6. Students with significant executive functioning issues will benefit from a mentor/coach.

  1. The coach can help them at the beginning of the school year to get set up with any accommodations.

  2. They can meet with the coach two or three times a week to check in on:

    1. Making sure that they’re monitoring their time.

    2. That they’re getting their study time in.

    3. Getting enough sleep.

    4. Help them solve any problems they might be having with getting materials.

It is helpful for students to go to college feeling empowered with the organizational skills they need to stay on top of their work.

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