Are high schoolers ready for college?

By Paige Alexander Oct 4, 2019

Every high school teacher screamed at us about how they were preparing us for college.

They declared professors don’t care whether we pass or fail; they get paid regardless and our grades depend on us.

High school teachers weren’t completely right or wrong.

Only you can determine your grades.

But college professors aren’t the drill sergeants high school teachers are.

They do care about your grades; it’s just not within their job description to monitor your every move.

Although much of the curriculum learned in high school and college is similar, the environmental shift is drastic and that in itself is a learning curve.

Adjusting to college classes is one of the most difficult parts of transitioning out of high school.

A plethora of successful college graduates can attest high school didn’t properly prepare them for college; they simply adjusted to the college environment.

College is starkly different from high school.

I’ve never felt such freedom.

There’s absolutely no one to tell me what my limits are besides myself; the same goes for everyone else.

This newfound freedom is the best and worst thing possible.

As legal adults, no one can force us to go to class.

Our parents are too many miles away to dictate like they have for the previous seventeen years.

We have to take charge and set our lives in the direction we want it to go.

For a multitude of people this is a completely new challenge.

In high school, teachers would pull you out of class or email your parents if you were missing an assignment or if you did poorly on a test.

In college, professors don’t make a big deal out of a few bad test grades.

They simply suggest to the class to adapt new study habits.

Most classes don’t have daily assignments to complete, which can make a class seem easy until you fail a test.

Studying outside of class, and not relying on your professor to spoon feed you the answer is foreign to many incoming college freshmen, but not impossible to learn. 

Students are treated as inferiors in high school.

There are set privileges and it’s easy to lose them.

You have a limited time for walking between classes.

Most passing periods are six minutes long; hopefully you don’t have to speak to your teacher after class, use the bathroom, run to your locker or all three.

Too many tardies lead to detention and too many detentions lead to suspensions.

College professors don’t necessarily always take attendance or mark you tardy.

While there is a limit to the amount of classes you can miss, you are ultimately responsible for showing up to class and on time.

Even with sporadic attendance, you can still read your text book, come in to take quizzes and tests and pass the class.

No one is going to prevent you from succeeding in your own way.

There’s “method to your madness”, and who’s to tell you that your madness is the incorrect brand of psycho?

If your “method” doesn’t work though, and you lack the motivation to show up to class, your professors will be less inclined to help you as they believe that you don’t care.

Unless you speak with your professors about any issues obstructing your learning, they have every right to assume you just don’t care about school.

Again, it’s all up to you and the decisions you make.

College is about learning to make adult decisions and not depend on teachers or parents.

Going to class is your decision.

Getting vital information you missed – or just don’t understand – is your responsibility.

The strict setting of high school does not fully prepare students for the independence they will indulge in at college.

If high schools were to become more lenient with policies and allow more responsibility for their students, students wouldn’t feel so bewildered at college.

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