Student Data Collection Q&As

Click on the topic areas below to view the Q&As.

Use of AEBG Funding / Reporting Student Data


Q1: Will you be providing more detailed rules about how we determine what instructions and services are AEBG funded, or are we to devise our own rules about this? For example, if AEBG funds pays for an associate dean of non-credit programs who supports not only noncredit students but also credit students, how should we determine which students are AEBG funded and who are not.

A: If you are spending AEBG funding on staff that assist students enrolled in the AEBG program areas, then - yes - these students would need to follow the AEBG requirements.  All students receiving AEBG funded instruction, supports, and/or services would need to be entered and updated in TOPSPro Enterprise.

Please note - students and funds are tracked separately. Funds to support a position are about time spent on AEBG activity and not tied to the percentage of students served.  Please track all students in the AEBG related program areas.

Q2: Is AEBG still collecting data on community college credit and CTE on credit side? If so, is the TE entry record to be completed?

A: We will only be collecting student data on AEBG funded instruction, supports, and services.  If you have a community college program (credit or noncredit) using AEBG funding for these purposes, then you would need to track the students and report the data.

Q3: How does this apply to funds used for Capital Outlay? Is that Instructional support or service?

A: Data for all students enrolled in AEBG program areas at the Capital Outlay site need to be collected and reported to the AEBG Office.

Q4: What if a majority of our support services, i.e. counseling, guidance, are funded by a different funding source. Do we need to report on those services?

A: If any AEBG funds (regardless of the percentage) are used for instruction, support, and/or services in an AEBG program area, then the member would need to report those students into TOPSPro Enterprise.

Q5: To be clear, if there is a non-credit program, collecting apportionment, and those classes are "supported" by AEBG funds, those non-credit students would have to be assessed by CASAS and records entered into TE.

A: Yes – if a non-credit program that falls under one of the AEBG program areas is collecting apportionment, and is supported by AEBG funds, those students must be entered into TOPSPro Enterprise.  If the program is ABE, ASE or ESL, with 12 hours or more of instruction, than those students must be assessed by a federally approved assessment tool (see pre/post testing guidance).

Q6: Just to clarify, if we are holding AEBG-funded outreach events that advertise our noncredit programs, do we have to gather all of the demographic data elements in TE from students who attend those events but do not enroll in our programs?

A: No – marketing and outreach events to potential students do not require a member to collect student information and report it. The State AEBG Office requires you to collect student information once the student begins the enrollment process.

Q7: The community college in my consortium is wondering about "supports" to students. At first pass, they think they will not be reporting on any AEBG data because they don't think they are providing support financially to AEBG students. They have used their AEBG funds on curriculum writing mainly.

A: Consortia wide marketing, outreach, teacher/faculty meetings, member meetings, are examples of activities that benefit the consortium as a whole, and do not need to be tracked.  If the curriculum was developed, using AEBG funds, with the intent to be used for a specific community college course, then they would need to report the students into TOPSPro Enterprise.


Pre/Post Testing


Q1: Where can I find a list of federally approved assessment tools?

A: Federally approved tools can be found on the AEBG student data collection website under the NRS register link. We will make sure that there is also a separate link to these tools for your convenience.

Q2: What about testing for parent-child success, AWD, & CTE?

A: The AEBG Office is developing a statewide field-based council to look at requirements, including assessment and learning outcomes, for these programs.

Q3: In our region, we are addressing Digital Literacy for adults in Parent Success program. Should we Pretest?

A: The AEBG Office encourages these sorts of ideas, and would recommend pre/post-testing in these instances – but for now pre/post-testing is required just for ABE, ASE, & ESL. The AEBG Office is reviewing how we will assess adult students in this program area.

Q4: Please clarify the 12 hours or more.

A: For WIOA II eligibility, all students must have at least 12 or more hours of instruction, so with the alignment of AEBG to WIOA II, AEBG is maintaining the same requirement.

Q5: What about testing services – does that qualify in the 12 hours or more of instructional?

A: Here is the definition from the NRS Guidelines:

Definition: Hours of instruction or instructional activity the learner receives from the program. Instructional activity includes any program-sponsored activity designed to promote student learning in the program curriculum, such as classroom instruction, assessment, tutoring, or participation in a learning lab.

Q6: We are currently post-testing 40-70 hours of instruction. I heard that if we post-test students with less than 70 hours of instruction, we will now be penalized somehow?

A: There is no penalty for less than 70 hours.  The AEBG Office recommends following the test publisher’s test administration directions for the minimum number of hours required before post testing, however, which is 70-100 hours.

Q7: Do I understand correctly that all members receiving AEBG funds MUST use one of the NRS tools?

A: AEBG members using AEBG funds for instruction, supports, and services for students enrolled in ABE, ASE, and ESL (with 12 hours of instruction or more) must use one of the federally approved assessment tools and follow the National Reporting System (NRS) requirements. 

Q8: TABE testing is an approved test so those scores will be reported through TE as well?

A: Yes, TABE testing is a federally approved assessment test, and it can be reported through TOPSPro Enterprise.  Please see the NRS register link in a prior question for all the federally approved assessment tools.

Q9: Did you say that we need to pre and post test next school year? or next semester?

A: The pre & post testing for AEBG began is effective January 3, 2017 for 3rd Quarter Reporting.

Q10: Will we be able to use course grades/progress indicators for upper levels of ESL or contextual ESL rather than federally approved instruments?

A: ESL programs need to use the NRS federally approved tests for documenting learning gains for state reporting.  Other progress indicators can be used at the local agency level.

Q11: If a member does not want to implement TOPSPro because of low service to ABE/ASE/ESL, can a partner member provide their data?

A: Each consortium member must obtain a unique Agency ID, and report eligible students in TOPS Enterprise – but if an agency has another member do the actual data input at an alternative physical location, that is fine.


Follow Up Measures / Outcomes


Q1: What are the recommended follow up measures for 16/17 to have AEBG members report in TOPSPro?

A: For 16/17 follow up measures, please self-report AEBG student outcomes via the update form in TOPSPro Enterprise (see the list below). If a student has a social security number, it can be imported with demographics, or manually entered in TE in the SSN field along with other student demographics.

However, this is not a mandatory requirement, but it will assist the State in its effort to do state level data matching for employment, wage, and postsecondary information.

The regional training will cover the details on how to self-report student outcomes.

  • Completion of high school diplomas or their recognized equivalents.
  • Completion of postsecondary certificates, degrees, or training programs.
  • Placement into jobs.
  • Improved wages
  • Postsecondary Transition

Q2: What is the operational definition of the follow up items listed in Box #9 for the TOPSPro update form?

A: Please see the data dictionary.

Q3: If a consortium defines additional metrics, i.e. Immigrant Integration, how would the state like to review those? How would a consortium collect and report additional metrics of progress in areas that have identified as important to their region?

A: It is recommended that additional proposed metrics be reviewed by a field based work group in coordination with the AEBG Office.  If the workgroup and AEBG Office identified/agreed on these new outcomes for state level reporting, they would be added to TOPSPro Enterprise for the 17-18 PY.

Q4: How would a consortium collect and report additional metrics of progress in areas that have identified as important to their region or local consortia?

A: There is a Provider Use field in TOPSPro Enterprise that can be used for this purpose. This field can be expanded if needed.

Q5: When do completions of HSD need to be submitted?

A: Use the update form in TOPSPro Enterprise to report student outcome data pertaining to high school diplomas.

Q6: Does credential include industry certification?

A: Yes – use the TOPSPro Enterprise update form to record any student completed industry certification. TE will also be collecting the type of certification received

Q7: Will there be any supplemental "backup data required" for employment placement or wage gains?

A: As stated in the response above, please self-report AEBG student outcomes via the update form in TOPSPro Enterprise. If a student has a social security number, it can be imported with demographics, or manually entered in TE in the SSN field along with other student demographics.

However, this is not a mandatory requirement, but it will assist the State in its effort to do state level data matching for employment, wage, and postsecondary information. For self-reported student follow up data, there will be no backup data required.

Q8: So we don’t need to worry about trying to federate data with our members and partners?

A: That is a local decision on whether or not you use a local federated data system with your members and partners.  The State AEBG Office is attempting to establish data sharing agreements at the state level to meet this need. Look for additional guidance to be released soon. The short term goal right now is to begin tracking AEBG students in TOPSPro Enterprise, collect self-reported follow up information, collect social security numbers if provided, and begin pre/post testing AEBG students in ABE, ASE, & ESL classes.


Reporting / Due Dates


Q1: So if we use TOPSPro we don't need to do the excel spreadsheets like we did at the end of the year last year?

A: Correct. No more excel spreadsheets for student data reporting.

Q2: When is the first quarterly and annual performance report due?

A: A calendar of submission due dates has been posted with more details, with the first required AEBG submission being the 3rd Quarter Report s due 4/30/17. The 4th Quarter is due 8/1/17. TOPSPro Enterprise will be the data collection system AEBG will be using for 16/17 student data collection.

Q3: Is there a due date for the AEBG submission? Will we have extra time to implement TOPS? Will you be speaking to the frequency of reporting? We are non-WIOA, so I expect it to take some time to launch this pre-post test process. However, do we have to report pre/post-test outcomes on the April quarterly report?

A: Please contact CASAS and AEBG Office for technical assistance to meet the deadlines.

Q42: Are there additional quarterly due dates like WIOA?

A: The due dates are not exactly yet aligned (3rd Quarter Reports due 4/30/17, and 4th Quarter Reports due 8/1/17).

Q5: So all AEBG funded students will complete an entry and exit record, correct?

A: Yes – all AEBG funded students for instruction, supports, and services will complete an entry and, update, and exit record in TOPSPro Enterprise for the 16/17 school year.

Q6: 16/17 student data are expected to be entered into TE as they are collected, but the absolute deadline for the 16/17 data is 8/1/2017. Is that right?

A: Yes, 16/17 student data is to be entered into TE as the data is collected. The student data deadlines for 16/17 are as follows: 3rd Quarter due 4/30/17, and 4th Quarter due 8/1/17.

Q7: Just to clarify, no roll up will be needed by the consortium lead for data submission? No portal?

A: No roll up or use of the data portal will be necessary.

Q8: Is the plan to have AEBG ESL and ASE data collected through CASAS to be reported in state level reports as a consortia rather than individual member?

A: For accountability purposes, each member will report in TOPSPro Enterprise their AEBG funded students (enrollment and outcomes). This information will be displayed in the annual legislative report by member and by consortium. The AB104 legislative requires an annual legislative report which looks at the following:

  1. How many adults are served by members of the consortium
  2. How many adults served by members of the consortium have demonstrated the following:
    1. Improved literacy skills
    2. Completion of high school diplomas or their recognized equivalents
    3. Completion of postsecondary certificates, degrees, or training programs
    4. Placement into jobs
    5. Improved wages
    6. Transition to Post-Secondary *

*added later


High School Diploma


Q1: Do we pretest EVEN if they have a HSD?

A: If a student already has a high school diploma, there is no need for a pretest.

Q2: I am still concerned about the K-12 adult school diploma programs that need assessment testing and use their own district ones now, not an NRS one.

A: High School Diplomas reported by school districts in California are compliant with NRS requirements.

Q3: When do completions of HSD need to be submitted?

A: By August 1, 2017 (4th Quarter).

Q4: Does earning a high school diploma count as a post test for ASE?

A: Usually, no, but in some instances learners who place at the ASE high level are credited with a pre/post-test pair.

Q5: Is a post-test required if a student completes their GED?

A: No.

Q6: If a student is dual enrolled will there have to be two sets of assessments, in both institutions?

A: Yes, it depends on the program and instructors. However, outcomes must be reported using NRS approved instruments.




Q1: Wondering about TE training for members that are not familiar with it nor use it. Will there be webinars planned and how will TE support be available to new users?

A: Yes - regional training and webinars have been scheduled beginning in February and continuing on into May. Check the AEBG website for online registration.


Other Systems


Q1: ave you identified any gaps in Launchboard in terms of what we need to report for AEBG and what that system is able to track?

A: Launchboard is a data dashboard tool intended to look at transition into post-secondary education and is not intended to serve as an AEBG reporting system nor is it a student data collection system. While CASAS is working with Launchboard to align data elements in TOPSPro Enterprise, data will appear in a later timeframe than what is required for AEBG reporting. For more information, please contact or read the document at:


TOPSPro Questions


Q1: For multi-college districts do we need to buy multiple licenses or can we buy one license for the entire district?

A: One license per district.  Please contact CASAS for their pricing schedule for your consortium. CASAS will develop and send a customized spreadsheet with more specific information about TE pricing and ordering, and schedule a one on one phone appointment to review.

Q2: If we are already using Tops pro Enterprise will that have all the information required for AEBG reporting?

A: For state level AEBG reporting, TOPSPro Enterprise will meet all requirements.

Q3: What is unclear is how the information will get from TOPSPro to AEBG?

A: TOPS Enterprise is an online application, so agencies do not need to submit or upload data for submission each quarter… the data is received automatically.

Q4: How will data on students who get student services get into TOPSPro?

A: Agencies can mark “Transition Services, Counseling Services, or Supportive Services” - using the Update form (field #8) or by entering it in directly into the TE software.

Q5: If we need to follow up with CASAS, is there a designated point of contact at CASAS we should reach out to?

A: Please e-mail

Q6: Is there an additional cost to CASAS testing?

A: Yes. Details depend though on whether your consortium decides to do eTesting, pencil/paper testing, or a combination of both. This issue will be addressed when you set up the phone appointments with CASAS.

Q7: Some members are asking if AEBG will be providing additional funding now that you are requiring that some members must purchase TOPSPro?

A: The State AEBG Office allocated Data and Accountability funding for meeting these requirements to format data systems to connect with TOPSpro or to purchase TOPSPro.

Q8: Do we need to specify what services students are getting? If so, which data elements in the data dictionary capture the name/type of services students receive? For example, if they receive counseling, which the field capture that information in TE?

A: TOPSPro has fields that will be able to capture services on the update record.  Please work with CASAS for technical guidance on capturing this data. A data dictionary has been posted on our AEBG website.

Q9: Do all of the data elements in the data dictionary need to be captured for each student receiving AEBG funded instruction or services, regardless of the type of instruction and/or service they receive?

A: Please collect and report data described in the data dictionary.


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The California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office (CCCCO) and the California Department of Education (CDE) are working in partnership to implement the requirements outlined in the Adult Education Block Grant (AEBG). We will continue to provide guidance and solicit feedback from the field throughout the implementation process.

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