• Starting college or sixth form

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      There are a number of local colleges and schools offering a range of courses. It's a good idea to look at their websites, ask for a prospectus and visit on open days before deciding which is best for you.

      You can also find information at What next? Your choices at 16

      What to ask

      Ask staff and other students about the difference between school and college (see also Heather and Harriett's real life stories). College may be more interesting and exciting, but you might find it more challenging and find that you have to do more for yourself.

      Successful students in further education:

      • are well-organised
      • can manage their time well
      • are clear on what to do
      • can work independently
      • can set themselves goals
      • are motivated to do well
      • can explain to staff what their needs are
      • relate well to other students.

      If some of these describe you, then you're off to a good start. If this doesn't sound like you, it may be a good idea to ask for help and work on developing these skills.

      In an interview

      Be clear about what you will need to access your course. Some of the following questions may be relevant for you:

      • what additional support will be available? (eg Communication Support Worker, mobility training)
      • will I be able to get the equipment I need? (eg a radio aid or portable closed-circuit television)
      • will staff be trained in how to deal with my disability?
      • can I get information in large print or Braille?
      • have there been hearing or visually impaired (HI / VI) students on this course before? (and if so, could you meet them).
      • could I have my interview in a quiet room where the sound doesn’t echo? (HI)
      • is there a college tutorial programme and mentoring?
      • how many days a week will I have to be at college?
      • how many hours each day will I need to be at college?
      • is there a chance of having a Taster Day before I start?
      • will there be any work experience? If so, will employers be made aware of my needs?
      • if a PowerPoint is used, would I be able to get a copy beforehand?
      • if there are exams, could I have access arrangements (e.g. modified paper, extra time)?
      • what if I want to change course or drop a subject?
      • what can this course lead to?

      College contacts

      Further information

      These pages have been written by the Sensory Needs Service (SNS). We can give advice on most sensory needs issues.

      Contact us

      Email: scsn@eastsussex.gov.uk
      Phone: 01273 481154