Continuous Process Improvement
Data Integrity Team – FTIAC Data
Chris Buczynski, Research Coordinator
Peter Kim, Coordinator, Learning Lab
Laura Lubeck, Academic Affairs Assistant, Health Careers (Scribe)
Timothy Seguin, Accountant, Financial Services (Team Leader)
David Cunningham, Director, Financial Services (Sponsor)
Table of Contents
I. Project Statement………..…3
II. Operational Definitions……….4
III. Background Information……….6
IV. Analysis of Current Process………..9
V. Theory of Improvement……….20
I. Project Statement
To improve data integrity related to FTIAC
institutional reporting as measured by a decrease
in error rates, time spent in error correction, and
ability to successfully generate accurate FTIAC
reporting through Colleague.
II. Operational Definitions
Active Server Pages -‐ Basically a "program" used to create dynamic and interactive Web Pages. An ASP file can contain text, HTML
tags and scripts (programming commands). Scripts in an ASP file are executed on the server. (modified from:
An open source content management platform powering millions of websites and applications. Basically a "program" used to create
dynamic and interactive Web Pages. It’s built, used, and supported by an active and diverse community of people around the world.
A student who is enrolled for credit in a college or university while still in high school. A student is classified as dual-‐enrolled in each
semester in which these conditions are met.
A software package from Ellucian: "Ellucian Recruiter™ is advanced student recruitment and enrollment management software that
provides insight into the prospect pool, using enrollment probability and predictive modeling to help identify ideal prospects.
Ellucian Recruiter has the ability to personalize the message to each prospect, with tools to ensure the message gets delivered the
desired way. In addition, this student enrollment software’s performance tracking and analysis tools provide real-‐time visibility into
campaign performance so the focus/energy is on the most effective strategies. (adapted from:
First Time In Any College -‐ A student who has enrolled in college for credit in a degree-‐seeking program for the first time after having
graduated from high school or having received a GED or the equivalent. A student is only classified as a FTIAC in their first enrolled
semester in college. FTIAC and Transfer student classifications are mutually exclusive.
“NCES (National Center for Education Statistics) has established the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) as its
core postsecondary education data collection program. It is a single, comprehensive system that encompasses all identified
institutions whose primary purpose is to provide postsecondary education. IPEDS consists of institution-‐level data that can be used
to describe trends in postsecondary education at the institution, state, and national levels.” (from IPEDS Reporting for Colleague
Student – About the ST Federal Reporting Module, Ellucian)
A student with prior regular (not dual-‐enrolled) for-‐credit enrollment in a postsecondary institution who enrolls at Henry Ford
Community College for the first time with the intention of completing an award at Henry Ford Community College. A student is only
classified as a transfer student in their first enrolled semester in college. FTIAC and transfer student classifications are mutually
Those who have a non-‐immigrant status while in the U.S. that allows the applicant to attend college. (modified from:
A student enrolled at another college/university who wishes to take classes at HFCC and then return to their current
college/university. (modified from:
HFCC's current ASP-‐powered web site for student admissions and recruiting.
In Recruitment Theory, the process of filtering down potential students to enrolled students.
What is a FTIAC?
Beginning with a uniform baseline is an implicit part in measuring change in any system, and the FTIAC cohort (First Time In Any College after having graduated from high school) is as close as possible to a uniform group of individuals. Consequently, the FTIAC cohort is used internally by Henry Ford Community College as well as by state and federal governments to measure a variety of institutional statistics such as graduation rates, retention rates, college readiness, and more. This data is used, in part, to allocate funding to and within the college, develop curriculum and initiatives, and allow prospective students to compare institutions.
Why do we need accurate and timely FTIAC data?
FTIAC data is reported each Fall to the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS). The IPEDS system is assembled around a series of interrelated surveys to collect institution-‐level data in enrollments, program completions, faculty, staff, and finances. Fall enrollment data is due November 1st.
“The completion of all IPEDS surveys, in a timely and accurate manner, is mandatory for all institutions that participate or are applicants for participation in any Federal financial assistance program authorized by Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended. The completion of the surveys is mandated by 20 USC 1094, Section 487(a)(17).
“The collection and reporting of racial/ethnic data are mandatory for all institutions that receive, are applicants for, or expect to be applicants for Federal financial assistance as defined in the Department of Education (ED) regulations implementing Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (34 CFR 100.13), or defined in any ED regulations implementing Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. The collection of racial/ethnic data in vocational programs is mandated by Section 421(a)(1) of the Carl D. Perkins Vocational Education Act.
“The reporting of racial/ethnic and gender data for institutional staff on the Human Resources component is also mandated by P.L. 88-‐352, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 (29 CFR 1602, subparts O, P, and Q), in odd-‐ numbered years (i.e., 2007-‐08, 2009-‐10, etc.), for institutions with fifteen (15) or more full-‐time employees.“ (https://surveys.nces.ed.gov/ipeds/)
Accurate and timely FTIAC reporting is required, especially if the College is to participate in Federal Aid programs. However, the need for timely and accurate FTIAC data goes well beyond regulatory requirements. Below are listed some of the reporting at HFCC that requires accurate FTIAC data:
IPEDS Graduation Rates Survey -‐ 150% Annual Institutional Data Update Student Profile IPEDS Graduation Rates Survey -‐ 200% Institutional Characteristics Retention studies
IPEDS Enrollment Gainful Employment (when required to report) Student Satisfaction Surveys IPEDS Student Financial Aid Survey Data for Center for Educational Performance
Improvement (P-‐12 Longitudinal)
Community College Survey of Student Engagement
Achieving the Dream Fall Cohorts Michigan Postsecondary Handbook Profile Grant applications
Net Price Calculator Fast Facts
What is wrong with current FTIAC data?
Unfortunately, the FTIAC cohort is difficult to define at HFCC. In a perfect world, the student's admit status would be established as part of the application process and would reliably indicate their true admit status. The HFCC data system, Ellucian's Colleague, aka "HANK", does contain a data field associated with the application to record the student's admit status. Prior to June 1, 2013, complications arose
1. The student was allowed to self-‐declare their status.
2. The options allowed in this field are not mutually exclusive.
3. The student is allowed to apply more than once and may have multiple applications.
4. Some conditions require that the student have more than one application on file (e.g. restricted/wait-‐listed programs)
5. The student application is for a specific academic term, but once the application is approved, the student may enroll in any term, including terms prior to or after their "admitted" term.
Some of these issues have improved in recent years. Many duplicate online applications are being detected prior to being imported into HANK. The student, after a fashion, still self-‐declares admit status, but as of June 1, 2013 the online application limits the available
statuses to: DOM (domestic); IL (international); and GS (guest student). Unfortunately, the FT (FTIAC) status is not one of the options, and the remaining options are not mutually exclusive. Domestic students could be FTIAC or transfer students and international students may be FTIAC or transfer students. So, both domestic and international students may be FTIACs.
Without a reliable admit status as part of the application data, multiple other criteria must be evaluated to determine if a student is, or is not a FTIAC. These other data (student program; institutions attended; dates/years attended; transfer credits; prior enrollment at HFCC) are often contradictory, and/or incomplete and they require manual evaluation on a case-‐by-‐case basis.
Student status is determined twice for each student for each term. A preliminary determination is made after grades are required for 15-‐ week classes (at which point students in 15-‐week classes are considered "officially" enrolled), and again after the semester is complete and all final grades have been posted. Manual verification of a student status is often subjective and is always time-‐intensive, requiring up to 3-‐4 weeks a year.
Because a FTIAC status on an application does not reliably indicate that a student is a FTIAC, and because FTIAC status cannot easily be derived from HANK data, the FTIAC status for a student, once determined, is stored in a separate database.
The process that needed to be reviewed and analyzed was that of the online admission process. The preponderance of regular admissions applications results from prospective students visiting the HFCC website to apply for admission. There is a need to look at both the current process (implemented June 1) and the most recent previous process as the historical data is skewed in terms of frequency and types of data errors. The focus is always on the Fall term as that data is utilized for IPEDS reporting.
Here are the steps that occurred from a student’s initial contact with the HFCC website through generation of the IPEDS report: 1) Student visits website and begins application for admission
2) Student self declares their status a. International Student b. Guest
c. First Time In Any College (FTIAC) d. Transfer
3) Student completes and submits their application
4) The ELF process is run (multiple times hourly) which transfers student data for applicants into HANK. It is also run weekly for prospects data which is also transferred into HANK.
5) A Web Focus report is generated providing Fall enrollment data which is then subjected to multiple queries and use of both internal and external data to arrive at a fairly accurate FTIAC cohort.
6) The data from this cohort is submitted as part of the IPEDS reporting process.
Flow Chart 1
Prior to June 1st, 2013, there were two processes by which FTIAC data was identified. The first process relied on student self-‐identification as “first time student” on both a paper and online application, and the resulting data, as represented in the yellow, included applications for students who did not enroll or misidentified themselves as FTIAC. The second process involves one Research Analyst using several decision points and creative use of existing resources to identify FTIACs, and the resulting data, as represented in the yellow 3D block, includes students who enrolled but who misidentified as FTIAC or for whom there were no applications for the term enrolled.
While the student was given the four options to self-‐identify on the application, as the following WebFocus data shows, there are other categories for the student’s admit status. HFEC stands for Henry Ford Early College, which uses a different application procedure. DES stands for Dual Enrolled Student, which also uses a different application procedure. The DOM status began in Fall 2013.
Here are the steps that currently occur from a student’s initial contact with the HFCC website, following that process to generation of the IPEDS report:
1) Student visits website and begins application for admission
a. Student self declares status: International Student, Guest, Domestic 2) Student completes and submits application
3) The ELF process is run (multiple times hourly) which transfers student data for applicants into HANK. It is also run weekly for prospects data, which is also transferred into HANK.
4) A Web Focus report is generated providing Fall enrollment data which is then subjected to multiple queries and use of both internal and external data to arrive at a fairly accurate FTIAC cohort.
Flow Chart 2
After June 1st, 2013, the online application was streamlined, removing the option for students to self-‐identify as FTIAC altogether. Now, links on the application will take the student to one of three options: International Student, Guest (external generic application), or Domestic. The data field that would normally identify a FTIAC student is no longer being populated by the online application, leaving the identification of FTIACs exclusively to the manual process of the Research Analyst, who must use the lengthy decision points and must still filter through applications and enrollment data to try to determine FTIAC status of hundreds of students that existing data and reporting instruments, including WebFocus, cannot determine without such manual intervention.
www.hfcc.edu Online Application International Student First Time Student Transfer Type of Application Dom IS
New Student HANK
Credit/Non-Credit Audit Y/N Dual Enrolled Y/N Degree Programs Y/N Degree, Guest?Transfer, Non- FTIAC students
After June 1st
, 2013, online applications
no longer identify FTIACs
Enrolled in College Before (check against National
Admitting Institution College Y/N?
Variable decision points to determine FTIAC status
M isid en tifie d w ithou t ap plic atio ns f or the term en rolled M isid en tifie d w ith ap plic atio ns f or the term en rolled
One of the process improvement methods that the team used to attempt to locate the main cause for the majority of FTIAC errors was the relationship diagram as shown above. We were able to identify communication between three areas of the college—the Office of Research, Planning, and Effectiveness, Admissions and Recruitment, and IT Services as an important process for insuring FTIAC data is part of the application and reporting processes. One change that highlighted the importance of communication was the fact that the online application starting June 1st, 2013, no longer has the option for students to self-‐identify as FTIAC. The communication process is what helped also identify
Although Data Transfer is a mechanical process, it was felt by the team to be important to identify when that import process occurs, which can impact the process of collecting accurate FTIAC data. If the import process occurs without a process to verify the student’s admit status, then misidentified and non-‐identified FTIACs are likely to occur. Also, the relationship diagram identified the importance of having an advisor meet with a student whose admit status as FTIAC may be questionable; the team felt that could be a place where a secondary verification could occur in such instances, with the advisor then updating the student’s admit status in the system.
During the data gathering stage, we decided to look at how other colleges addressed this issue. Hoping to identify best practices, we looked at several Colleague community colleges with varying enrollments. We did not find any obvious best practice:
Benchmarking FTIAC Data Integrity
College Monroe County Comm College St. Clair Comm College Jackson Comm College Kalamazoo Valley Comm College Fall 2013 Enrollment? 12,642 4,070 4,660 5,660 11,150 Student self-‐ identifies as
FTIAC? YES YES YES NO YES
Significant editing by IT/Reporting Dept.?
YES YES YES N/A N/A
FTIAC errors can be viewed as one of two main types -‐ students who say they are FTIACs and are not (box "A", the yellow area to the upper left of the diagram), and those who should be counted as FTIACS but are not (box "C", the orange area to the lower left). This second group may have been misidentified either because they do not have an application on file for the term in which they first enrolled, or they were incorrectly
identified as non-‐FTIACs on their application for the term.
The error rates may be calculated as percentages of the two subgroups (A/(A + B) and C/(B + C) or as percentage of the whole group (A/ (A + B + C) and C/(A + B + C)) or some variation of that.
Two Main Types of FTIAC Errors
FTIACs on their application Students identified as
for the term
CFTIAC students who were correctly identified on their application
for the term
FTIAC students who: 1) Did not have an
application for the term; or
2) Were incorrectly identified as a non-‐FTIAC
on the application
• This chart displays the error rates as calculated on the two subgroups (14FA estimated). There were three significant events which have
influenced the type and magnitude of the error rates. First, after HANK was installed in 2002, the application admit statuses were not properly assigned. Most of the "Misidentified as FTIAC on the Application" errors were due to an incorrect status being manually assigned to dual-‐enrollment students. That error rate improved through the years as understanding of the admit satus and its uses increased.
• A second major decrease in the "Misidentified as FTIAC on the Application" errors rate occurred with a change in HFCC's Registrar between
2008 and 2009.
• The third major change occurred on 6/1/2013 with a revised online application process which no longer allows a student to self-‐identify.
One of three admit statuses (DOM, IS, GS) is assigned based on one of four links selected by the student and FT (FTIAC) is not an option.
FTIAC Not Idenpﬁed on Applicapon Misidenpﬁed as FTIAC on Applicapon 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%
02FA 03FA 04FA
05FA 06FA 07FA 08FA 09FA 10FA
11FA 12FA 13FA 14FA
Types of Error Rates continued:
This chart includes all of the actual FTIAC students who were correctly identified (green bars) and misidentified (orange bars) as well as those who were incorrectly classified as FTIAC students (yellow bars) (14/FA is estimated). The actual FTIAC cohort has been normalized to 100% so the green and orange bars represent the true FTIAC cohort for the term. Until 13/FA, both error rates were, in general, decreasing
-‐200% -‐150% -‐100% -‐50% 0% 50% 100%
02FA 03FA 04FA 05FA 06FA 07FA 08FA 09FA 10FA 11FA 12FA 13FA 14FA
79% 81% 61% 65% 79% 71% 74% 76% 75% 75% 81% 40% 0% 21% 19% 39% 35% 21% 29% 26% 24% 25% 25% 19% 60% 100% -‐193% -‐205% -‐42% -‐57% -‐23% -‐19% -‐28% -‐8% -‐4% -‐4% -‐7% -‐5% 0%
Two Types of FTIAC Error Rates By Term
The above two charts display the main sources of error in FTIAC determination before and after 6/1/2013 and how they influence FTIAC errors by term. These are qualitative approximations and do not represent actual calculated error percentages. The errors have been normalized to 100% for each chart.
0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70%
Main Sources of Error AQer 6/1/2013
Web Structure: Student can no longer self-‐idenTfy as FTIAC
A: No Applicapon for Term
0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70%
A: No ApplicaTon for Term
B: Student Self-‐IdenTﬁes as FTIAC Incorrectly
Types of errors continued:
FTIAC data for Fall 2013 and Fall 2014 are projected to include a mixture of types of errors, with the web structure increasingly being identified as the source of the errors as indicated in the graphs below.
VI. Theory of Improvement
Since June 1, 2013, the online admissions application no longer asks students to self-‐identify as “first time in any college” (FTIAC). Students are either identified as “domestic” (DOM) or “international” (IS). Prior to June 1, 2013, students were asked questions on the application to try to have them self-‐identify as FTIAC. Investigating how the process works at other institutions as well as with our current IT structure, we recommend implementing a two-‐part admission application. We recommend that the first part of the application ask clear yes/no questions that can accurately identify if a student is FTIAC or not. Two recommended questions are: (1) Will you have graduated from high school or earned a GED before you enroll? (2) Did you take a college credit class after graduating high school or earning your GED?
The current online admission process uses an online web-‐form developed by The Doyle Group called “Site Manager.” Site manager not only is used for the online admissions application, but also for recruiting students for orientation as well as other web forms and online applications. Site manager uses “ASP” which are “active server pages” that use the “asp” extension. These pages require ActiveX and Java script code and regular updates and plug-‐ins to browsers. IT Services recommends no longer supporting Site Manager.
The College has migrated Web resources from the ASP.NET framework to Drupal, an open source web management system. Rather than individual pages having to be managed and updated, the Drupal architecture allows more efficient “pushing” of changes to information across web pages. To replace all of the web forms and online applications currently using Site Manager with a Drupal-‐based system would require a “Drupal Team” dedicated to such a project, and this would be a new customized build. One of the concerns with customized builds of this nature is the uncertainty with how sustainable and easy to maintain the new recruitment and application system would be.
Ellucian (Datatel) Recruiter is part of Ellucian’s overall customer relationship management (CRM) package that would replace Site Manager and potentially more seamlessly integrate with Datatel Colleague (HANK) and the other Ellucian (Datatel) products the College currently uses such as Retention Alert and the new Ellucian mobile app. Ellucian Recruiter is used by hundreds of colleges nationwide.
In addition to recommending replacing Site Manager with Ellucian Recruiter, we recommend the implementation of a secondary verification process of FTIAC status, and under the current arrangement, we envision this could happen when the student meets with an advisor or counselor. In particular, we recommend that the term of admittance be updated to reflect the first semester the student has enrolled at the College. This step could resolve the discrepancy between admittance term and first term of enrollment which creates one of the current
problems with determining FTIAC status because a student could have submitted an application indicating he or she was a first time student, but may not enroll until several semesters or years later, yet in the mean time, that student may have enrolled at another College, invalidating their FTIAC status. (Note: At Schoolcraft College, students are required to submit a request to update their applications if they have not enrolled at Schoolcraft within two years. During this process, Schoolcraft students are asked if they have attended other colleges.)
While the first two countermeasures in our force field analysis above are specific to the objective of this CPI Team to address the integrity of
FTIAC data, the third and fourth countermeasures we have identified came to the attention of the team from researching other areas of the College involved with the application process. The team discovered that three years ago the College was very near to implementing Datatel Recruiter, which had shown promise to resolve not only the FTIAC data issue but potentially a host of other customer relations management (CRM) and enrollment data concerns. Cost and staffing concerns left the project abandoned, but interest among Admissions and Recruitment
managers and staff still remains. The CRM software has now been rebranded as Ellucian Recruiter, and has expanded its recruitment and customer relations management tools, including addressing the two countermeasures that our team identified as recommendations for most likely improving FTIAC data collection. Ellucian provides testimonials and literature to suggest cost-‐savings and improved retention and enrollment as a result of Ellucian Recruiter. Notable Michigan colleges that have already adopted Recruiter include Walsh College, Kalamazoo Community College, and Jackson Community College. As some of the screenshots below demonstrate, Recruiter is a robust CRM tool that can help optimize the time of limited recruiting staff to better personalize communication with prospective students and thus improve opportunities to recruit and retain them.
After careful review of process for determining FTIAC status, with particular focus on the transfer of data from Site Manager to Colleague, the following process improvements are recommended:
Theory of Improvement Implementation Monitor Results
1) Recommend Ellucian Recruiter which will not only resolve the FTIAC data problem that was the focus of this CPI Team but could potentially increase the retention of prospects and improve overall customer relations management
2) Recommend cost-‐benefit analysis on the purchase of Ellucian Recruiter, estimated to be over $320,000
3) Recommend review of information in this CPI report as it relates to any changes to the recruitment and admissions processes
Purchase Ellucian Recruiter a) Install Recruiter b) Train staff
i) Include “Train the Trainer” for selected individuals to reduce external training costs
c) Make sure Recruiter is set up to funnel only enrolled student data to Colleague.
d) Design online admissions application so that applicants are asked a series of questions prior to completing an application that will determine FTIAC status.
Institutional Research Coordinator, in the process of preparing IPEDS reporting, monitors and documents the accuracy of FTIAC cohorts.
Assumed in the Gantt chart above is the direct involvement of several departments including Recruitment and Admissions, IT Services, Financial Services, the Office of Research, Planning, and Effectiveness, and Ellucian trainers and technicians. While the timeline extends into Winter 2017, improvements are expected with the first monitoring of FTIAC data when it needs to be reported in Fall 2015.
Potential Future Side Benefits
Currently there are in the HANK system 120,992 applicants with no student record history. These are people we would rather not have in HANK. There are about 298,598 individuals with student records with no applicant history (pre-‐HANK students is a best guess). There are 438,472 total individuals with some sort of student record.
Over 22,000 students are currently in the system that were billed an application fee that have never enrolled. Managing student account
The five-year cost summary is provided below for two Ellucian solutions. The Ellucian Hosted SaaS solution requires an annual subscription fee
and higher user fee, but has a lower set up cost.
Ellucian Recruiter SaaS (Hosted) Solution
Description Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5
Recruiter SaaS Subscription:
Users @ 2850 per user 10 28,500 28,500 28,500 28,500 28,500
Implementation & Training Package:
Estimated hours @ $225 per hour 412 92,700
Totals: 121,200 28,500 28,500 28,500 28,500 235,200
Based on information provided by Jerry Kondraciak (IT Services), the on-‐premise solution is preferable, because possible cost-‐savings
for hardware can be explored, such as using an existing server originally allocated for the Portal to host Recruiter.
The “on –premise” Recruiter solution involves a one-time license fee and then on-going annual maintenance.
Ellucian Recruiter On Premise Solution
Description Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5
Recruiter Software License:
Recruiter Base License 66,000
User Licenses @ 1500 per user 10 15,000
Implementation & Training Package:
Estimated hours @ $225 per hour 412 92,700
Recruiter Annual Maintenance:
Fixed fee 23,100 24,255 25,468 26,741 28,078
Per user fee @ 525 per user 10 5,250 5,513 5,513 5,513 5,513
28,350 29,768 30,980 32,254 33,591
Totals: 202,050 29,768 30,980 32,254 33,591 328,642
New students needed for 5 year payback: 7.00 7.00 7.00 7.00 8.00
Revenue per student 9,100 9,100 9,100 9,100 9,100
Additional Revenue per year required for payback 63,700 63,700 63,700 63,700 72,800 327,600
Note: Revenue per student assumes 70/30 split between out-district/in-district, out-district tuition approximately $150 per credit hour (weighted between out-district and out-state/international), District tuition $87 per credit hour, weighted average tuition approximately $130 per credit hour, students pay for 70 credits to graduate, and approximate revenue per retained new student: $9,100.
Relationship to AQIP Criteria
AQIP Criteria Project Relationship
Understanding Student Needs This project can improve customer relations, increasing retention of prospective and existing students.
Supporting Institutional Operations • This project can improve reporting of FTIAC
data, which is used for institutional reporting externally and internally; FTIAC data is used for retention and student success initiatives.
• This project can help college leaders with
their decision-‐making by providing reliable enrollment data more efficiently.
• This project can improve the college’s
student records database by keeping prospective student data separate from enrollment data.
Planning Continuous Improvement This project will create improved efficiency in not only the collection and verification of FTIAC data but also in the processes involved with collecting data on the recruitment and enrollment of students at HFCC.
Building Collaborative Relationships This project will build internal relationships between HFCC departments, including Recruitment and Admissions, IT Services, Counseling, Advising, Financial Services, and the Office of Research, Planning, and Effectiveness.
Steering Committee Feedback
Team Name: Data Integrity Team
Idea For Improvement
1. Replace Site Manager with Ellucian Recruiter.
2. Create a two-‐part form in Ellucian Recruiter and develop screening questions to
establish student admit status using part one of the two-‐part form.
3. Train counselors/advisors to verify and update the student admit status during
the student's first appointment.
4. Optimize use of Recruiter to enroll prospective first time students.
Team Feedback Meeting – Date: __________________________