The leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome.

National Down Syndrome Society
8 E 41st Street, 8th Floor
New York New York 10017
[email protected] 

Looking for Postsecondary Education

There are more and more individuals with Down syndrome pursuing postsecondary education after high school. The avenues through which these students pursue postsecondary education vary greatly and may include attending college through specialized programs for people with intellectual disabilities or attending community and other local college classes for audit and/or credit.

If you or someone you know is interested in pursuing postsecondary education, the earlier you start to do research and plan, the more likely you and your family will be to find a situation that works best for your wishes and needs.

For more information about the different types of programs that are available and to see if there are opportunities near your home, please visit, an excellent website for information about current programs that includes a searchable database and information geared toward students, parents, and professionals. This website has resources specifically for students, parents and professionals, which answer questions each particular group might have.

ndss resources


  • Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD)
    A professional membership organization for individuals involved in the development of policy and in the provision of quality services to meet the needs of persons with disabilities involved in all areas of higher education
  • Association of University Centers on Disability (AUCD)
    A network of interdisciplinary centers advancing policy and practice for and with individuals with developmental and other disabilities, their families, and communities
  • Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST)
    Develops innovative, technology-based educational resources and strategies based on the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
  • HEATH Resource Center
    Provides online, web-based resources on postsecondary education for individuals with disabilities
  • Institute for Community Inclusion
    Supports the rights of children and adults with disabilities to participate in all aspects of the community
  • National Center for the Study of Postsecondary Educational Supports at the University of Hawaii at Manoa
    Working towards a new system of educational supports for people with disabilities, encouraging postsecondary programs to foster high expectations, build self-confidence, and develop an understanding of strengths and weaknesses of all students
  • On-Campus Outreach
    This site contains articles, fact sheets, on-line training modules, and related websites on serving students with intellectual disabilities in postsecondary settings who still receive special education services in public schools. Be sure to check out resources and training and support sections of this website
  • TransCen, Inc.
    The associates at TransCen, Inc. develop, implement, and research innovations regarding school-to-adult life transition and career development for people with disabilities. Their work is driven by the belief that there is a job for everyone who wants one, regardless of the nature of their disability, their need for workplace support and accommodation, or economic circumstance
  • The Transition Coalition
    The mission of the Transition Coalition is to maximize professional development in secondary school reform and transition at the national, state, and local levels. The Coalition supports best practices and creates professional development forums using face-to-face and online training and technical assistance.


  • Adults with Down Syndrome. Pueschel, Sigmund, Ed. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing. (2006)
    Contains several chapters about postsecondary education and employment.
  • The Down Syndrome Transition Handbook. Simons, Jo Ann. Bethesda, MD: Woodbine House (2010)
  • Going to College: Expanding Opportunities for People with Disabilities. Evans, Getzel and Wehman. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing. (2005)
  • Life Beyond the Classroom: Transition Strategies for Young People with Disabilities. Wehman, Paul. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing. (2001)
  • Postsecondary Education Options for Students with Intellectual Disabilities. Grigal, Hart, Martinez, Sax, and Will. Research to Practice Brief funded by U.S. Department of Education. (2006)
  • The Power to Spring Up: Postsecondary Education Opportunities for Students with Significant Disabilities. Katovitch, Diana. Bethesda, MD: Woodbine House (2009)
  • Transition Services for Students with Significant Disabilities in College and Community Settings: Strategies for Planning, Implementation, and Evaluation. Grigal, Moon, and Neubert. Pro-Ed, Inc. 


  • Buddy Walk
  • NDSS Yourway
  • NDSS DS-Ambassadors