Maximizing Academic Potential of Students with Learning Differences
When educational pursuits become more about what “feels good” as authentic work to the student, it becomes clear how her education connects her to her city, neighborhood, family, and friends.
The McAuley Academic Program (MAP) supports Mercy students with identified learning differences to become experts in their own learning and effectively advocate for the support needed to access and thrive in Mercy’s college preparatory curriculum. It is the ultimate goal for each MAP student to develop a personal love of learning. The MAP program begins by establishing a solid understanding of the student’s unique learning profile based on current progress and needs and background data from psycho-educational testing. Students in the MAP program begin to clearly describe what they can do to be successful in school. Students apply their learning strategies to classwork and projects, study for tests/quizzes, preview course content, practice tips for test-taking, and fine tune strategies for organization. Students in MAP receive individualized learning support to utilize practical solutions that will aid their success in Mercy’s college preparatory curriculum.
Students are admitted into the MAP program within the admissions process. Learning support documents (IEP, Diagnostic Neuropsychological Evaluation, Psycho-educational Evaluation, 504 Plan) help guide the process to best match potential students with the program support design. There are approximately 10-15 freshmen admitted into the MAP program each year.
Support in the Classroom
Examples of accommodations: preferential seating, use of assistive device to record lecture notes, pair with a class peer for note and classwork confirmation, review of lecture notes with learning specialist, audio books, extra set of textbooks, use of a calculator, extra time on tests and quizzes, and testing in an alternative location.
Transition to College
MAP students participate in a comprehensive college counseling program during their four years at Mercy. The college counselor helps MAP students identify colleges and universities that are a good all-around fit for that student, in addition to having excellent learning support programs. In preparing to advocate for their learning needs in college, students access copies of their learning plans with a list of the accommodations they have used while in high school. One hundred percent of Mercy’s MAP alumnae have been accepted to college.