Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.

Department (Legacy)

Department of Leadership, Foundations, and Human Resource Education

Committee Chair

Welsh, John F., 1951-

Author's Keywords

Student performance; Dual credit courses; Kentucky; Technical colleges; Community colleges


Advanced placement programs (Education)--Kentucky; Academic achievement--Kentucky


This research addresses the problem of productivity in the P-16 system of education, emphasizing the repetition of the senior year of high school with the first year of postsecondary education. This study analyzes this integration through dual credit courses in the context of both P-12 and higher education reform in Kentucky. An analysis of these factors is critical in light of the deregulation of dual credit in Kentucky since 2000 and the increased enrollment of high school students in college courses both nationally and in Kentucky. Dual credit courses in Kentucky community and technical colleges are evaluated based on the learning productivity in transition from secondary to postsecondary education for students according to their gender, race, residence, socio-economic status, high school performance, and a student preparation for college. The design incorporates methods prevalent from the literature in research conducted on dual credit programs. Student performance in dual credit courses is the criterion variable, while high school performance and preparation for college are the primary predictor variables. Gender, race, residence, and socio-economic status are examined as demographic variables. The population for this research includes high school students taking dual credit courses in Kentucky community colleges and technical colleges. The sample extracted from the Kentucky Community and Technical College System database consists of high school students admitted with ACT placement scores in English and mathematics to Kentucky community and technical colleges in the Fall 2000, Spring 2001, Fall 2001, and Spring 2002 semesters (N = 3,822). Chi-square was used to evaluate the change in student participation in dual credit courses by demographic variable. Multivariate multiple regression was used to predict the factors that influence performance in dual credit programs. The results indicated no significant changes in the proportion of students from each demographic variable taking dual credit courses, despite a significant increase in the overall numbers of students taking these courses from Fall 2000 to Fall 2001. The results of the regression analysis indicated that demographic variables such as gender, race, residence, and socio-economic status significantly predict, both at the multivariate and univariate level, student achievement in dual credit courses. The demographic variables of gender and residence were the most consistent predictors of the criterion variables, however, high school preparation, as measured by the ACT English subtest was the strongest predictor of student performance in dual credit courses.