Landmark College

Landmark College is a private college in Putney, Vermont exclusively for those with diagnosed learning disabilities, attention disorders, or autism. If offers associate and bachelor's degree programs in the liberal arts and sciences and is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Established in 1985, Landmark College was the first institution of higher learning to pioneer college-level studies for students with dyslexia. The college is expensive;[3] fees for the 2015–2016 year were $51,330.[4] In 2015, it topped C.N.N. Money's list of most expensive colleges.[2] It was also the most expensive four-year, private non-profit by list price according to the Department of Education's rankings for the 2012–2013 year;[5] fees including room and board were reported to be $59,930 in 2013[6] and $61,910 in 2015.[3] Scholarships of up to $30,000 are available.[7]

Landmark College
MottoNosce te ipsum
Motto in English
Know Thyself
PresidentPeter Eden
Academic staff
Administrative staff
Location, ,
United States

42°58′36″N 72°30′43″W
Colors         Blue and gold
AffiliationsNew Eng Assoc Sch Coll
Six Coll Collaborative
Assoc Vt Ind Coll
MascotFinn the Shark


The campus the college occupies originally belonged to Windham College. After Windham shuttered in 1978, the campus remained unused. Plans for a prison and for a conference center fell through. Putney Selectman Peter Shumlin was instrumental in persuading the government to allow Landmark School in Beverly, Massachusetts, to start a college on the dormant campus. Landmark College was established in 1985.[8]

Lynda Katz was president from 1994 to 2011, when Peter Eden took the helm.

Landmark began offering Bachelor degrees in 2012.[9]

The College built a $9.6 million, 28,500 square foot science and technology center named the MacFarlane building in 2015.[9] It was the first building erected since the college's founding.[10]

Educational approach

Applicants are required to document a condition that impairs learning, such as dyslexia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or autism spectrum disorder. All students receive personal, directed assistance in their studies. The student to faculty ratio of 6:1 is small by postsecondary standards.[11] Classroom faculty employ universal design principles, integrated assistive technology elements, individualized attention, and multi-modal teaching strategies in their courses.[12]


Students come from across the United States and from around the world to attend Landmark College. The average age is 20 years, and about 97% of students live on campus. The male-to-female student ratio is about 3:1, which reflects the higher number of males who are diagnosed with conditions that affect learning.[13] Students are not required to have taken the SAT or ACT examinations.[14] About half of Landmark's full-time students have failed or withdrawn from another college; this may be due to the low number of tertiary-level students who disclose and seek help for their disability.[15] Student turnover is high.[1]


The college offers associate degrees and since 2012 has offered bachelor's degrees. Additionally, a Graduate Certificate in Universal Design aimed at professionals in the field of special education is accredited through nearby Marlboro College.

Secondary school students in several areas of Landmark's county, Windham, can access dual-enrollment NEASC accredited courses. Middle school students can participate in a summer program called "Expanded Learning Opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics."[16]

In 2011, the New York Times reported that 30% of students in the associate program graduated within three years; many drop out in their first or second semester. Of those that graduate, a third drop out. Many students struggling at other colleges go to Landmark for a "bridge semester" to learn to manage their learning differences in an academic setting.[1]

High school program

The three-week-long High School Program is intended to assist high school students entering their Junior or Senior year who learn differently develop self-understanding and self-advocacy skills. Faculty who are experienced at working with students who learn differently provide coursework, academic support and experiential activities.

Student life

Housing options range from suite living to traditional residence halls. All rooms are designed as doubles or singles. Residential halls are equipped with wireless Internet, cable television, laundry facilities, and common lounge space, as well as full-time residential staff. Some suite buildings have kitchens.

Landmark College provides student leadership opportunities as part of its education program. The Student Government Association engages in the governance of the college, the Phi Theta Kappa honor society completes a service project each year, and the Campus Activities Board plans events for the community. Students also serve in leadership jobs supporting their peers as Resident Assistants and Orientation Leaders.

The Department of Student Affairs delivers programs, activities, clubs and special events for students throughout the year. Impressions literary magazine, The Independent student newspaper, and WLMC student internet radio station are among the print and audio media. The Landmark College Athletic Department provides club, intramural, and intercollegiate sports and fitness activities for students. Student groups include Hillel, the LGBTQIA Club, Film Club, Fitness Club, Anime and Manga Club, Gaming Club, Chess Club and organized activities in rock climbing, mountain biking, hiking, and martial arts are among the extracurricular activities. The College has a Women's Center and holds a play every Spring.


  1. "Learning with Disabilities." Abby Goodnough. New York Times. 7 January 2011. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  2. "10 most expensive colleges." Katie Lobosco. C.N.N. Money. Time Warner. 2 July 2015. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  3. "Do the Math: College Tuition Is Rising Faster Than Inflation ." Molly Walsh. Seven Days. Da Capo. 16 September 2015. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  4. "Plan for Greater College Costs for Students with Learning Disabilities." U.S. News. Farran Powell. 21 November 2016. Retrieved 2017-06-09.
  5. "Most Expensive Colleges." Michael Stratford. Inside Higher Ed. 1 July 2014. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  6. "More colleges provide options for kids with learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorder." Associated Press. Daily News of New York. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  7. "Grants & Scholarships." College. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  8. "An educational landmark remembered." Wendy M Levy. Commons of Windham County issue 324 page A1. Vermont Independent Media. September 23, 2015. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  9. "Landmark College To Open New $9.6 Million Science, Technology And Innovation Center." Howard Weiss-Tisman. W.N.P.R. Connecticut Public Broadcasting. 28 September 2015. Retrieved 2017-06-09.
  10. "Whoopi Goldberg receives Landmark award." Howard Weiss-Tisman. Brattleboro Reformer. New England Newspapers. 5 May 2014. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  11. "Private Colleges With the Lowest Student-Faculty Ratios".
  12. "Manju Banerjee: an 'Amazing Opportunity' at a College Focused on Students With Disabilities." Interviewer Dan Berrett. Chronicle of Higher Education. 1 April 2012. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  13. Baron-Cohen, Simon; Lombardo, Michael V.; Auyeung, Bonnie; Ashwin, Emma; Chakrabarti, Bhismadev; Knickmeyer, Rebecca (14 June 2011). "Why Are Autism Spectrum Conditions More Prevalent in Males?". PLOS Biology. 9 (6): e1001081. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1001081. PMC 3114757. PMID 21695109.
  14. "The complete list of test-optional colleges and universities, as of now." Valerie Strauss. Washington Post. Nash. 12 April 2017. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  15. "Learning-disabled students get firmer grip on college." Mary Beth Marklein. U.S.A. Today. Gannett. 18 October 2011. Retrieved 2017-06-10.
  16. "Landmark College expands reach in Windham County." Mike Faher. Brattleboro Reformer. New England Newspapers. 15 January 2017. Retrieved 2017-06-09.
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