Are you thinking of returning to college as an adult? It can be a scary prospect; entering into a world of young people, knowing that you’re probably not going to fit in. After being out in the adult world it can also be daunting to think that you are going to have to structure your own time once more and take in more information during the course than you’ve had to in years. However, if you’re at a place in your career where you feel like you’re ready for a completely new path, becoming an adult learner can be an extremely rewarding route. If you think you’re going to follow this path, take a look at these tips to help you succeed.


Just like younger students, the key to taking control of your workload is careful organization. Your workload will come as a shock to you after leading a normal working life for a while however, as long as you split it into manageable chunks it is not difficult to tackle. Use filing systems, color coding, labeling, anything that works best for you. And make sure you keep a note of any deadlines as you go. It is also important to keep on top of your finances and for help with this, visit


Your attitude towards this opportunity is the difference between success and failure. First of all, you must attend all of your classes; don’t be tempted to adopt a teenage attitude now that you no longer have to get to work on time. Remember you are paying for every class so it is in your best interests to attend, plus each lesson will be so valuable for your overall learning. The majority of work you will have to do at college will be self-lead, so it is important that you treat it exactly the same as you would a 9 to 5. Splitting your time up in a similar way will make sure you achieve the right work/life balance. Unlike the majority of younger students, you have the advantage that you have developed confidence and social abilities, particularly towards your superiors. So, when you are confused about anything, make sure you go to your tutors for help, this way you will stay on track to achieve your goals rather than passively accepting potential failure. And lastly, rather than just following the syllabus, challenge yourself to develop your skill set, as this will make you even more attractive to potential employers in your new chosen field.


As an adult learner, you are not necessarily going to college with the expectation that you’re going to make friends however, even though the younger students may not wish to befriend you, there will still be plenty of other students your age. There will be social events created to unite you all and these will not only be occasions where you could make friends to improve your lifestyle at college, but they will also be opportunities to network with your peers. You may meet people with the same interests who could help you to achieve your goals.


Approaching adult learning in the right way; by being organized, proactive, and open minded can reap long term benefits for yourself and your career. For more career tips, take a look at this post Career Change at 30: A How-To Guide on Going Back to School.