Date of Award

Fall 12-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Dr. Sherry DeVore

Second Advisor

Dr. Rhonda Bishop

Third Advisor

Dr. Steven Bishop


Developmental education continues to be an area of concern for higher education institutions. Understanding and developing programs to provide support and increase retention, completion, and success rates for developmental education students is vital to increasing degree attainment in the United States. This study explored one developmental education program at a Midwest community college implemented in 2011. A mixed-methods approach was executed to compare completion and success rates two years prior to implementation and two years following implementation, as well as to obtain qualitative information regarding perceptions of the program. Quantitative data analysis revealed increases in developmental education rates for qualifying Connection Program students when viewed holistically; however, varying degrees of program effectiveness were seen in discipline-level results. Qualitative data analysis revealed four emerging themes: 1) Flawed Placement, 2) Positive Intentions, 3) Flawed Execution, and 4) Student Ambiguity. These findings coincided with research in the developmental education field as areas of importance in regard to increasing degree attainment for these students


Copyright 2014