Executive Function Strategies Blog

The Anxious College Student: An Executive Function Connection

College students have plenty of fuel for anxiety. They’re in a social and academic environment that’s significantly different than any that they’re used to. They’re often trying to balance course work with a job - in addition to social and family obligations. And they’re doing all this while also trying to chart out a plan for their entire future (and trying not to think too hard about all the student loans they’ll need to repay upon graduation). While that is a lot to handle, some of that anxiety can be mitigated with upgrades to the way that they manage their demands, or their Executive Functioning. The two students you’ll be reading about show the connection between anxiety and Executive Function - and how learning more effective self-management techniques can help to lighten the emotional load.



How to Navigate Student Supports in College

Editor's note: This week, we feature guest blogger Janet Price, Director of Admissions and Outreach at College Living Experience in Rockville, MD. Please read more about Janet below.

Support in college for students with learning disabilities includes accommodations ranging from extra time on exams to a note-taker or copies of the professor’s notes. However, obtaining and accessing those accommodations requires you to be on top of your game when it comes to Executive Functioning skills.



Talking to Teachers: Building Self-Advocacy in College Students

Visiting a professor during office hours in college can be a daunting task, especially for freshmen. Students wonder if they should just stop by to introduce themselves or if they must prepare specific questions. Anxiety might take over, with students fearing they won’t sound smart enough or seem like “college material.” Students often think: “What if I make things worse by meeting with my professor?” and “What if I totally blank out and embarrass myself?” All of these concerns are valid, but avoidance tends just to perpetuate the vicious cycle of fear, and students lose the valuable opportunity of one-on-one time with their professors.



When Anxiety Hurts Academic Performance at College: How Parents Can Help

Editor's note: This week, we feature guest blogger Marcia Morris, M.D., a psychiatrist with 20 years of experience working with college students. Please see her full bio below.

If your child is not doing well at college, there could be many reasons why – poor organization, too much partying, challenges with time management – to mention just a few. But did you know that one of the most common causes of poor academic performance is anxiety? In fact, students rated stress and anxiety as the top problems negatively impacting academic performance, according to a 2017 survey by the American College Health Association.