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I just had this issue this year.  We have a student who has a
significant reading disability.  We have a reading proficiency
requirement for all students of 13.1 on the Nelson Denny.  I met with
the instructor of the course designed to assist students in meeting the
requirement and the director of testing.

The bottom line issue that MUST be addressed is "What is the purpose of
the requirement?"  and then "What are reasonable accommodations that can
be employed that do not fundamentally alter the core or nature of the
requirement?"  As we discussed the purpose of the 13.1 requirement the
conclusion was reached that it is necessary for college students to read
and comprehend at the 13.1 grade level.  We did not define what it meant
"to read".  The individual in question must rely heavily on books on
tape and the use of Kurzweil 3000 for accessing printed material.  We
determined that it did not matter to us how he acquired the information,
the larger issue was "Was he able to acquire and understand the
information at the 13.1 grade level?"  Thus, we allowed him use of the
Kurzweil 3000 when taking the Nelson Denny.  I did turn off all features
that would allow words to be defined or looked up in the built in
dictionary and the computer was disconnected from the internet.  

Concerning time, we view the test as a power test and allowed the
student additional time.  Research indicates that additional time does
not significantly impact student scores for those individuals who do not
have some type of processing disability, however, it does provide a
significant impact for those who do.

Hopes this helps

Edwin Welch, Ph.D.
Coordinator of Academic Support Services
Taylor University
236 W. Reade Ave.
Upland, IN  46989
(765) 998-5523
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-----Original Message-----
From: Open Forum for Learning Assistance Professionals
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Mary Weller
Sent: Tuesday, December 20, 2005 5:30 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Reading Out Loud Nelson Denny Reading Assessment

Dear Members:
I have a student with a learning disability for which an accommodation
is to have tests read out loud to her.  What would your interpretation
be about having the entire Nelson Denny test read out loud to this
student?  Would the grade level or percentile rank be correct? What
about the time factor?  



Mary Weller
Reading and Study Skills Instructor
Kellogg Community College
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269-965-3931 X2286

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