Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Trinity Menu Trinity Search

You are here Prospective Student > Autistic Spectrum Transition Planning

Transitioning to College

Students undergoing the transition from secondary school to third level education are frequently surprised and overwhelmed by all the changes involved, and these changes are even more challenging for a student with AS. You are moving from a small environment of school, which you have gotten familiar and comfortable with after years of attendance, to a very large and unfamiliar campus right in the middle of the city, and this development can be very daunting.  Your transition into university will almost certainly involve adventures and challenges that you have not faced before, and you have to adjust to new activities such as taking the bus on your own, moving away from home, managing your university timetable, making dinner, etc. This is a whole new experience, and thus it can be really useful to start thinking about it while you are still in school so that you can prepare yourself early for this change.

Autism & Uni Toolkit

The underlying ethos of this toolkit is that students can use it in their own time, research issues concerning them, and come back to it when particular difficulties arise. Trinity specific content has been added as a means of gradual introduction to post-school study including students stories, and more general advice on the various reasonable accommodations available at Trinity. The Pathways to Trinity Transition Checklist has also been integrated into this tool.

Autism and Uni

Some of the difficulties students with AS face on transitioning to college include:Transition to College

  • Getting to know the campus environment
  • Finding lecture theatres and classrooms
  • Getting to know your classmates
  • Making new friends
  • Understanding the relationship between lecturers and students
  • Getting involved in societies, clubs and student unions
  • Understanding the course expectations for attendance and academic work
  • Understanding how the library and computer systems work
  • Setting a schedule for doing assignments
  • Managing free time
  • Managing the sensory environment
  • Getting used to the teaching style of lectures and small tutorial seminar classes
  • Getting used to the lack of routine and structure in the day
  • Managing independent living and new transport routes

Making the Transition to College – What do I need to think about?


Iamge of a car going to college graphic

Many students with AS find this very useful as it supports them in thinking about what they need to do before making the move to University. The AHEAD Disability Access Map is an interactive online desktop tool that will allow you to track your path to college step by step and give you lots of great information and advice. 

You can access the map by clicking on this link