How to Succeed as an Older College Student

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Find out if your college has any special resources for the older college student, also sometimes referred to as the non-traditional student. Most colleges have refresher courses and tutoring programs to help students with classes.

Own a computer and know how to use it. Any higher education program relies heavily on access to a computer. Many campuses are wireless, and you will no doubt see plenty of laptop computers in classrooms and the library.

Start slowly. Limit yourself to a couple of classes at first, especially if you are still working full-time. Look at other alternatives, like taking vacation time for college. Accelerated classes are sometimes held between semesters. These classes may last half a day every day for two weeks or all day for one week.

Organize your time. Older students are less likely to be distracted than younger students. But operating with a study plan makes college more manageable and less stressful.

Give yourself time to get used to being in school. It's normal to be afraid and nervous when starting something new. The anxiety will go away in time. Talk with other older students.

Meet with your professor during her office hours if you have more questions or concerns about class. Office locations and hours can usually be found in syllabuses handed out at the first class.

Make the most of your time at college. Join study groups with other students. Attend lectures outside of class in subjects that interest you.
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