Alisha CareyFollow




School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Cristie J. McClendon


college achievement, college persistence, college retention, concurrent enrollment, dual enrollment, first-generation college student


Curriculum and Social Inquiry | Education | Higher Education | Humane Education | Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education


Educational and political leaders across the nation seek to create a more educated population in order to compete in a global technology-oriented society and to increase earning potential of workers. Colleges and universities are currently seeking ways to increase persistence and achievement in order to produce more college graduates. Georgia’s ACCEL program provides funding for dual enrollment programs that exist to support earning college credit while in high school. This study explored one Georgia university’s persistence and achievement among first-time first-generation college students who participated in dual enrollment programs. First generation students are more likely to withdraw from college enrollment during the first year of attendance. Utilizing dual enrollment as a social and academic integration strategy for first-generation and economically disadvantaged college student persistence is supported by the theoretical framework of Tinto’s student integration model. This study employed a causal-comparative research design that matched 119 first-time first-generation students who earned dual enrollment credit with 119 first-time first-generation students who did not earn dual enrollment credit. A Chi-square test for association was conducted for hypothesis one. For the purpose of analyzing hypotheses two and three, two-tailed t tests with a .05 alpha level were used in the study. A Mann-Whitney U test was also utilized for hypotheses two and three. No significant statistical difference in achievement or persistence was noted among the control and treatment groups.