Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Morgridge College of Education

First Advisor

Franklin Tuitt, Ed.D.

Second Advisor

Nicholas Cutforth

Third Advisor

Lyndsay Agans

Fourth Advisor

Roger E. Salters


Access, Culturally relevant, Curricula, Pedagogy, Dual enrollment, Concurrent enrollment, High school programs, Higher education, Latinx students


Despite moderate gains in equal educational opportunities over the past 60 years, low-income students of color continue to lag behind their middle-class, White peers. This is particularly true for first-generation Latina/o students who: (a) have the highest K-12 drop-out rate than any other ethnic group in U.S. schools; (b) are underrepresented in high quality, rigorous secondary curricular tracks; and (c) continue to be overrepresented in two-year institutions and postsecondary vocational schools. Using a conceptual framework comprised of critical race theory (CRT), social theory, and community cultural wealth theory it was clear that the U.S. education system is still plagued by systemic and endemic racism. Contrary to the predominate neoliberal discourse that emerged in the education field after the Brown v. Board of Education ruling, it is clear that meritocracy is a myth and students continue to face disproportionate opportunities to learn. One of the current school reform initiatives being used to help underrepresented students not only gain access to four-year institutions but also persist to the attainment of a Bachelor's of Arts (B.A.) degree are dual/concurrent enrollment high school programs. Multicultural and antiracist educators argue that these programs may fall short of reaching their intended outcomes if the teaching staff does not utilize culturally relevant curriculum and pedagogy. Research findings show that students of color learn best in environments where they feel welcomed and valued. At the time of this study very little evidence existed showing whether or not dual/concurrent enrollment programs were reaching their intended outcomes for underrepresented students. In addition, the literature was unclear to what extent, if at all, culturally relevant curriculum and pedagogy were being integrated into these programs. Using testimonio narrative inquiry (TNI) as methodology the researcher attempted to address this gap in the literature. The primary method for data collection was in-depth interviewing. In total, six Latino students were interviewed on three separate occasions for 90 minute intervals. First, individual narratives were developed by analyzing and coding the data within each individual case. Next, a collective narrative emerged by analyzing and synthesizing the major themes across the cases. The major finding of this study indicates that significant improvements need to take place in order for dual/concurrent enrollment programs to be a viable pathway for first-generation Latina/o students to persist to the attainment of a B.A. degree.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Michelle Renee Turner


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

221 p.


Higher education, Curriculum development, Pedagogy