In the fall of 1987, Graceland University launched a pilot program designed to provide remediation of specifically diagnosed language dysfunctions among college students. These dysfunctions are estimated to affect one-third of the entire population without regard to sex, age, or intelligence. The specific dysfunctions addressed in this program are faulty auditory conceptual judgment which affects reading and spelling, and inadequate mental imaging which affects the ability to fully comprehend written and oral information.
Graceland's Chance Program is currently producing excellent results in assisting students to become "self-correcting" in their reading and spelling, as well as developing their ability to properly integrate imagery for expanded comprehension: to include drawing inferences, predicting/extending, and evaluating written and oral information.
The Chance Program is designed to be intrusive in nature in that it includes tracking class attendance, supportive advising, and academic strategies built around the specific remediation models. The Chance Program also makes physical arrangements to meet the individual needs of the student. These arrangements may include oral testing, extended time tests, taping of classroom activities for note taking, or other arrangements deemed necessary.
The Chance Program is based on two clinical models. The LiPS Program (Lindamood Phoneme Sequencing), developed by researchers Patricia and Charles Lindamood, is the model used for the remediation of reading and spelling problems. Visualizing and Verbalizing for Language Comprehension, developed by Nanci Bell, is the second model which is used to treat students who have been diagnosed as having poor comprehension of oral and written language.
Students who wish to enter the Chance Program must first meet with the coordinator of the program or a qualified clinician for a formal assessment of their language processing skills. The testing consists of a battery of language processing measurements, including the LAC test (Lindamood Auditory Conceptualization Test), as a basis for diagnosis; these tests are generally administered on the Graceland campus. The purpose of these assessments is to identify language dysfunctions, if they exist, determine the severity, and decide whether or not the Chance Program will best serve the prospective student's needs. If the testing shows that a student would benefit from the Chance Program, then a recommendation for acceptance will be sent to the Admissions Office. Here, after additional admissions criteria are assessed, a final decision is made.
Testing is necessary before a student will be considered for the Chance Program. Students who are accepted to the Chance Program and to Graceland University are assessed an additional charge of $1,375 per semester over and above the normal cost of room, board, tuition and activity fees. (Rates as of 2013-14)