Executive Function Accommodations

May 31, 2018


A brief thought for those of you who don't have executive functioning challenges. 


At countless points in my college career I suffered low grades because of late or forgotten assignments.  I'm not talking about a few late papers; I'm talking about almost weekly problems with due dates so significant that it would change a portion of my class grade from an A- to a C+. I struggled for a great while because I internalized the idea that it was my own laziness that caused this.


After a semester working as hard as I could to improve my grades and still losing points in the same area, I sought accomodations to prevent this from continuing.  I asked for a safety net for due dates—if I forgot an assignment or erred in my time management skills, I would have school-supported flexibility to still get my assignment turned in.  This would drastically have improved my grades by accommodating a challenge I struggled with then, and still struggle with to this day.  As you may have noticed by the "would" and "could" language I've used, this did not happen. But why?


Because I had to attend a series of meetings regarding scheduling.


Which I missed.


Because I didn't have the executive functioning skills to stay on top of it and attend the meeting.


Not once but three separate times, I dedicated and re-dedicated myself to this.  All three times, I missed the meeting.  Twice I completely forgot. The other time I showed up on time...a day after the meeting had occured.


I understand the administrative side of this issue and why they asked of me what they did.  I'm not sure I can say it was entirely unfair.  I just want people to know that—one, I struggle a lot more than I telegraph; and two, executive functioning challenges are very real.


Thanks for reading.





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