StudentTracker FAQs

> What is StudentTracker®?

StudentTracker® is an educational research service that enables schools, educational authorities, and organizations to query postsecondary enrollment and degree records nationwide, providing factual information on enrollment and graduation patterns nationwide. You can use StudentTracker to gain valuable insight, including:

  • Learn about your former or prospective students’ enrollment, persistence, and degree attainment over time
  • Understand enrollment trends and patterns
  • Analyze and improve your ability to target, select, and retain students

> What is the DA query? And how do I use it?

DA stands for Declined Admissions. This query identifies where former prospective students (admitted applicants who did not enroll) subsequently enrolled. Apply a date after the beginning of the term the student would have enrolled. For example, if a student declined admission for the fall 2006 semester, to track him, use “20060915.” In general, use 9/15 for fall searches and 1/15 for the spring.

> What is the PA query? How do I use it?

PA stands for Prior Attendance. This query identifies the previous school(s) of attendance of current applicants (undergraduate or graduate school applicants). Apply the start date of the term from which the system should search for a student’s prior attendance. For instance, to find prior attendance of fall 2006 applicants, apply the fall 2006 term begin date.

For a future term begin date, apply today’s date. For example, to find prior attendance of fall 2012 applicants, apply today’s date. The system identifies enrollment records retroactive of the listed search date.

Per FERPA regulations, the only query for which the Clearinghouse uses the SSN as part of the matching process is the Prior Attendance (PA) query.

> What is the SE query? How do I use it?

SE stands for Subsequent Enrollment. Use for three distinct student cohorts: current students, withdrawals and transfers, and alumni. Use the SE query to identify concurrently enrolled students. Apply the enrollment reporting freeze date for the term. Additionally, use this query to find subsequent enrollment of withdrawn students and transfers. Note the student’s last date of attendance and apply a search date that falls one month after that date. For example, a student who dropped out on October 15, 2006, should use a search date of “20061115.”

Last, use it to locate graduates’ subsequent enrollment. Note the student’s graduation date and apply a search date that falls one month after that date. Use a “20060615” date for a May 15, 2006 graduate, for example.

> What is the SB query? How do I use it?

SB stands for Sibling Enrollment. This query confirms a sibling’s or parent’s postsecondary enrollment for financial aid purposes. Apply the fall semester date of the current academic year. Use 9/15 of the academic year.

> What is the CO query? How do I use it?

Built to meet the Voluntary System of Accountability (VSA) standards (find out more), CO stands for Longitudinal Cohort. This query identifies graduation and enrollment rates (while also considering transfer behavior) for groups of either incoming freshmen or transfer classes over an eight-year window. These queries typically use a search date at least six years in the past. Apply a date after the beginning of the term the student enrolled for the first time. For example, if the student first enrolled in the fall of 2003, use “20030915.”

Queries that use a search date within the last eight years only return valid school years; it shares information as of the most recent school year.

> There are pound signs in the date fields. Why?

The #### signs appear if the dates were inputted in YYYYMMDD format and the column was custom formatted in YYYYMMDD. To correct, change the format to text. To learn more, see Using the Research Services Tab

> I do not have dates of birth. Can you still process the file?

Yes, the Clearinghouse can process the file, but the system algorithm relies heavily on names and dates of birth to find matches within the database. Needless to say, files without any dates of birth return very few matches.

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