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Determinants of Students' Success: The Role of Advanced Placement and Dual Enrollment Programs (NCPR Working Paper)

By: Cecilia Speroni

Using data from two cohorts of all high school students in Florida and controlling for schools' and students' characteristics (including prior achievement), this NCPR study examines the relative power of AP and DE in predicting students' college access and success.

The study finds that both AP and DE are strongly associated with positive outcomes, but the enrollment outcomes are not the same for both programs. DE students are more likely than AP students to go to college after high school, but they are less likely to first enroll in a four-year college.

Despite this difference in initial enrollment, the difference between DE and AP in terms of bachelor's degree attainment is much smaller and not statistically significant for some model specifications. In addition, the effect of DE is driven by courses taken at the local community college campus; there is no effect for DE courses taken at the high school