Parenting Your College Transfer Student: Supporting Your New Transfer Student

This is the third in a series of posts about the process of transferring to a new college.  Our first two posts considered the decision to transfer and the process of transferring.  This post looks at settling in to the new institution.

 A transfer to a new college is a fresh start.  Much like entering college as a new, first-year student, this fresh start can be both exciting and intimidating.  As a college parent, you can help your student make this adjustment smoothly.

Be supportive of your student as he goes through a transition period.  Help him be prepared for a time of adjustment.  Yes, he is familiar with college life, but his new college may be very different from his old institution.  He may feel out of place at first.  He will have an “in between” status for a while.  He is not a brand new freshman, but he is new and unfamiliar with things.  This will pass, but he needs to be prepared to give it some time.  He can’t assume that things will be done in the same way as they were in his old school.  Encourage him to ask questions often.

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Parenting Your College Transfer Student: Navigating the Transfer Process

In our last post, we considered some ways in which you might help your college student think about a transfer to another college.  Here, we consider how to help your student through the actual transfer process itself.  Our next post will examine ways in which you can support your new transfer student.

 Once your college student has made a decision to transfer to another college, there are some important tasks to be done.

Gather lots of information about potential colleges and/or programs.

 Your student may know exactly where he wants to transfer, or he may be looking for the appropriate school.  The more information he can gather, the more smoothly the process will go.  One advantage that your student now has is the knowledge he has gained through the time he has spent at his current school.  As he thinks about the reasons for transferring, he will think of questions he wants to be sure that he asks at the new school.  What are his priorities?  What wasn’t working (if anything) at the current school?  Encourage him to take time to look carefully at the new institution.  Study the website.  Visit the school.  Stay overnight on campus if possible.  Talk to current students.  Meet with admissions or advising personnel at the new school. Ask lots of questions.

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Parenting Your College Transfer Student: The Decision to Transfer

Roughly 2.5 million college students every year transfer to a different school.  Statistics from the United States Department of Education suggest that close to 60% of college students will attend more than one school before they graduate.  While many students find just the right college and stay there for four years, these statistics suggest that there is a good chance that your college student may consider a transfer to another college at some point during his college career.

While the overall transfer rate in the United States may be going up, if your child decides to transfer, the process is a major event for him.  Even though others may be going through the same process, it does not lessen the impact of the decision for your individual student.  Obviously, for some students who attend 2 year institutions, the decision may not be whether to transfer, but rather where to transfer. For other students, the decision is more difficult because a transfer may be an option.  Your student will need to go through a process of deciding whether or not a transfer is the right answer for him.  If he does decide to make a change, he will need to deal with the actual process of transferring, and finally he’ll need to make the transfer work once it happens.  This post considers some of the reasons that college students consider transferring to another institution and how you can help with the process.

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College Textbooks: Keep, Sell, Donate?

In our previous two posts, we considered the high cost but importance of textbooks and possible ways to save money when buying them.  In this final post on the topic, we’ll consider what students can do with their books at the end of the semester.

Your college student has just completed his course.  He bought his textbook and used it diligently throughout the semester.  Now that the course is over, he’s wondering what to do with this pile of books.  He has several options.

Read moreCollege Textbooks: Keep, Sell, Donate?


Where and How to Buy College Textbooks

In our last post, we considered the importance of college textbooks and some of the reasons why they are so expensive.  In this post, we’ll consider some possible ways of obtaining books. Our next post will consider ways students can sell books at the end of the semester.

Students may buy new books from the campus bookstore.

When your student considers possible ways of getting his textbooks, he’ll need to weigh convenience and cost.  The most convenient way to purchase his books is through the campus bookstore.  Bookstores work to make the task as convenient as possible.  If the student knows the name of the course and the instructor, the bookstore can usually tell him exactly what he needs for the course.  At many schools students can pre-order their books and have them waiting for them when they arrive or even delivered to their dorm.  However, this convenience comes with a price.  Campus bookstores are the most expensive way to buy a textbook.

Alternatives to the college bookstore may take a bit more work, and definitely some pre-planning, but there are alternatives out there.  Here are a few possibilities.

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College Textbooks: Tools of the Trade

This is the first of three posts about one of a student’s most valuable tools – her textbooks.  In this post, we’ll consider some essential facts and tips about the importance of textbooks.  In our next posts, we’ll consider some alternative ways to purchase books and some thoughts about reselling them later.

Aside from tuition, one of the major expenses your college student will encounter during the college years will be the cost of textbooks.  Students often head off to college knowing that they will need to buy their books and supplies, but having no idea how much to expect to pay.  As college parents, there are some important points about textbooks which you can help your student anticipate and understand.

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The Course Syllabus: Roadmap to Success

This is one of those posts designed to help you, as a college parent, understand your child’s world in college.  It may be helpful as you have conversations with your college student throughout the semester.

Almost every college course will begin with a syllabus.  It is generally handed out to students on the first day of class.  Some instructors may post their syllabi on line.  The syllabus is the roadmap of the course.  It lets the student know, at the very beginning of the course, what the expectations are, how to contact the instructor, what assignments will be due, and often a class by class or week by week plan of what will be happening.

Here are ten important pieces of information that may be gleaned from the syllabus.

Read moreThe Course Syllabus: Roadmap to Success


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