University of Minnesota
College Prep/ICI | Institute on Community Integration
http://ici.umn.edu/collegeprep
collegeprepici@umn.edu
Institute on Community Integration CEHD

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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is College Prep/ICI’s approach to its services?
  2. How much time does College Prep/ICI need to help students reach their goals?
  3. What is executive functioning and why is it so important?
  4. What non-academic assessments might be utilized to help a student get ready for college?

What is College Prep/ICI’s approach to its services?

College Prep/ICI uses two frameworks that were developed at the University of Minnesota:

The first framework, Ramp-up to Readiness, is used in area schools to increase the “number and diversity of Minnesota students who graduate from high school and have the knowledge, skills, and habits to for success in higher education.”

Ramp-up to Readiness supports students in five goal areas:

  1. Academic Readiness
  2. Admissions Readiness
  3. Career Readiness
  4. Financial Readiness
  5. Personal/Social Readiness

College Prep/ICI staff work with students and families to develop goals in each area and use the Ramp-up to Readiness Standards to assess individual college readiness. 

The second framework, Check & Connect, was developed to “promote student engagement with school, reduce dropout, and increase school completion.”  College Prep/ICI staff monitor student progress in high school or college through regular personal contact.

How much time does College Prep/ICI need to help students reach their goals?

Like other educational planning, this depends on individual needs.   Since we charge by the hour, College Prep/ICI staff work with students and their families on a flexible basis to meet current needs.  There may be specific times (like the second semester of junior year or early senior year during college application time) when there will be more need.  There are no long-term contracts or commitments and families are free to end services at any time.

What is executive functioning and why is it so important?

Executive functioning is the ability to link cognitive skills effectively and actively to self-regulation and inhibition; initiation of tasks; time management and organization; and emotional control.  In adolescence and young adulthood, brain development has not stabilized and virtually all high school and college students have some difficulty with executive functioning skills.  Individuals with disabilities, especially those with learning disabilities, ADHD/ADD, autism, Asperger’s, or mental health problems, often have particular limitations and need extra support and training to improve their executive functioning. 

By improving executive functioning, students can learn to stay focused on tasks; deal with unstructured or new situations; be better organized in thought and action; follow through and complete tasks; and anticipate changes in routine or work tasks.

What non-academic assessments might be utilized to help a student get ready for college? 

There are many formal and informal assessments that can support students' needs, including assessments of career preparation, leadership, personality type, independent living, social skills, organization and time management, and adaptability. 

Some examples of formal assessments we use include:

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