Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Higher and Adult Education


Higher Education

Committee Chair

Larry McNeal

Committee Member

Louis Franceschini

Committee Member

Reginald L Green

Committee Member

William C. Hunter


African American males at community colleges are facing greater challenges regarding persistence in today’s higher education environment. Several studies address institutional retention efforts of African Americans at 4-year institutions; however, a significant gap exists of research concerning African American male students' persistence efforts within the community colleges setting. This study assist policy makers, higher education administrators, institutional researchers, and program directors in regards to best practices of programs that promote student persistence at the community college level. Guided by C. Robert Pace’s “Quality of Student Effort” theory, this study was conducted to examine the differences among traditional and non-traditional African American male students’ perceptions of the community college environment, their quality of effort, gains, and inclination to persist. Several statistical procedures were conducted to analyze a national data aggregate of the Community College Student Experiences Questionnaire (CCSEQ) acquired from the Center for the Study of Higher Education (CSHE) at the University of Memphis. A secondary data analysis was conducted among 1,948 student respondents from 8 community colleges that responded to the electronic version of the questionnaire during the academic years 2010-2013. To address the five research questions presented within this study, the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to conduct multiple analyses that addressed four groups of dependent variables (perceptions of the college environment, student quality of effort, students’ perceived estimate of gains, and an index of students’ inclination to persist). The independent variables were traditional and non-traditional African American male community college students. Results indicate that significant differences exist in the responses of the community college sample. Amongst the four groups of dependent variables, the most notable difference is the affinity of traditional aged students’ and their perceptions of the college environment. Differences among traditionally aged and non-traditional African American male community college students were also observed regarding students’ perceived quality of effort, their estimates of gains and their inclination to persist at the community college level.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.