Answers to commonly asked questions about participating in the
CTE Employment Outcomes Survey


Who should I contact for more information about CTEOS?

See contact information on the Staff page


How do I sign up?

All California Community Colleges currently participate, underwritten by the Chancellor’s Office. The CTEOS is not currently available outside of the California Community College System.


What does it cost?

The financial costs of the survey are currently covered by the Chancellor's Office.


What questions are included in the survey?

View the current survey instrument on our Information and Resources page. 


How do I access my college’s data?

You can request your college’s data by contacting the CTEOS team. You will need to be on the list of approved Primary Contacts or get the requisite required approval.


How do I make sense of the data elements in my college’s dataset?

View the current codebook on our Information and Resources page. 


When do you anticipate the colleges needing to provide the student contact lists?

This varies depending on when the requisite approvals and contracts are complete. The CTEOS team will reach out to your college’s Primary and Data Contacts when it is time to begin the survey cycle.


How are the surveys conducted?

Initially, the survey is conducted by email. Then, non-respondents will be surveyed by SMS text link. After that, all non-respondents are sent to the phone bank to be surveyed. Finally, any remaining non-respondents are surveyed by two-way text messages as a last attempt to capture the most important data points.


Who will be included in the survey?

In general, the cohort of students will include former Career Education students who met the following criteria and stopped taking courses at the college approximately 1.5 to 2 years prior to the current survey year. The cohort includes:

  1. Completers: Have received a vocational/CE award that is Chancellor’s Office approved and enroll in 0-5 units each semester the next year (not enrolled or only minimally enrolled).
  2. Terminal Certificates: Received a vocational/CE award of at least 6 units that is not Chancellor’s Office approved (such as certificates with less than 12 units) and are not enrolled the following year.
  3. Skills Builders: Have completed 9 units that are SAM coded A-D, with at least one course SAM coded A-C (within the prior 3 years), have not received a vocational/CE award of 6 or more units, and are not enrolled the following year.


Can we include our college’s Non-Credit students?

Non-credit student populations are automatically included. A separate non-credit report is generated for all colleges with participating non-credit programs if more than five students provide both pre-and-post wage data.


How long has this survey been conducted?

The pilot survey was initially conducted in 2012 with a limited number of colleges participating. The survey was conducted every year with a varying number of colleges until 2017, at which point the Chancellor’s Office underwrote the survey for all California Community Colleges.