Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Dr. Barbara Burch (Director), Dr. Dean Kahler, Dr. Pamela Petty

Degree Program

Educational Leadership Doctoral Program

Degree Type

Doctor of Education


Student support programs occur throughout the country in various forms at colleges and universities. The STEPS program at Western Kentucky University provides support to students who are required by state mandate to enroll in developmental or supplemental education courses. This program tracks the individual interventions utilized by students such as tutoring, intrusive advising, and supplemental education seminars. Through an analysis of retention and graduation data, this study compared the success of STEPS participants to eligible students who are non-participants of the program. The study also compared the STEPS participant population with eligible students within other four-year public Commonwealth of Kentucky institutions with regard to student retention success. Eligibility for the STEPS program is determined by the use of the ACT and SAT standardized tests. Students, through the process of a chisquare analysis for significance, were found to have had various levels of significance with retention and graduation when comparisons between STEPS participants and nonparticipants were made through the fall 2006 and 2009 semesters. Significance was found for three of the four years of the STEPS program when compared to eligible students within the other four-year public Commonwealth of Kentucky institutions.


Educational Administration and Supervision | Higher Education Administration | Student Counseling and Personnel Services