Transitioning to College

The transition from high school to college is an exciting time for both a student and a student’s family. However, a big change, such as leaving for college, can be stressful at times, and knowing what to expect is helpful.

Below are some of the differences families and students can expect between what they may be accustomed to from high school and what will happen at the University. Students, the following table includes important information about how your rights and responsibilities change once you are enrolled at Michigan Tech.

Differences Between High School and College
  High School College

Accept services offered to you.

Seek out services by registering with Disability Services.


Expect information to be shared with parents/guardians.

Know that your right to privacy and confidentiality is upheld.

Placement and Accommodations

Include parents/guardians in decisions regarding placement and accommodations.

Make your own decisions regarding placement and accommodations.

Eligibility for Services

Include parents/guardians in decisions regarding eligibility for services.

Only include parents/guardians in decisions regarding eligibility for services if you choose.

Instructor Awareness

Let teachers approach you. They know your specific difficulties or concerns.

Tell your professors, instructors, advisors, and disability resource facilitators your concerns. Otherwise they won’t know.

Time Management

Follow the schedule you are given.

Manage your own time.

Reminders and Deadlines

Pay attention to reminders for exam dates and assignment deadlines.

Keep track of your exam dates and assignment deadlines by referring to the class syllabus.


Expect to be disciplined for skipping class.

Read the University Attendance Policy to learn when an absence is excused.

Time Spent in Classroom

Attend class about 40 hours per week.

Attend class about 13–16 hours per week.

Time Spent on Homework

Study time varies.

Study about two hours for every hour you spend in class.

Preparing for Exams

Memorize and identify information to prepare for exams.

Practice applying the information you've learned to prepare for exams.


Tutoring will be set up for you.

Go to Michigan Tech’s learning centers to sign up for free tutoring.

Grade Changes

Retake an exam to get a better grade.

Expect to take exams once. Grades aren’t usually retroactive.

Altering Courses and Programs

Take a course or program that has been altered.

Take courses offered. They are not fundamentally altered.