Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Dr. Donald Good

Committee Members

Dr. Virginia Foley, Dr. James Lampley, Dr. Susan French-Graybeal


The purpose of this quantitative comparative study was to determine the relationship between retention and academic success of students who participated in a First-Year Experience (FYE) course and students who did not participate in a FYE course within a southeastern community college in the United States. The impact of the relationship was to inform an understanding of how a FYE course influences student success.

Archival data were collected from the southeastern community college’s student information system, Banner, Data for first-time full time students were gathered, including whether or not the individuals enrolled in a FYE course. Other data included the student’s gender, at-risk status, and non-traditional student status. Retention data of the first-year full-time students were collected and measured in accordance with enrollment requirements of the Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR). Data for academic success were collected and measured by first-year student’s cumulative GPA.

Chi-square tests of independence and independent sample t tests were used to examine the relationship of the FYE course with outcomes that measured student success. Results from the chi square tests indicated, overall, the participants of the FYE course had significantly higher retention rates than those students who did not participate in the FYE course. The independent sample t test indicated students who participated in the FYE course had significantly higher cumulative GPA scores than those who did not participate.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.