On July 25, 2022, the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) launched a modernized website for professional users with the intention of improving customer experience. The update was a complete overhaul of the NSLDS website that includes new and simplified enhancements to make it easier for users to navigate through the site.
Financial Aid Dashboard
One new feature, called the Financial Aid Dashboard, is a hub where users can view a Title IV recipient’s total financial aid history along with a breakdown of their aggregate loan limits. In the Financial Aid Dashboard, users can also access a student’s current and future grant information, which is now integrated with the Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) System. This way, users do not have to navigate between the two systems.
New Reports Feature
Another update is a new Reports feature, called Cognos, which can be accessed directly from the Reports tab. Cognos allows users to immediately download certain reports in either Excel or PDF formats to their desktop, instead of having to retrieve reports from the Student Aid Internet Gateway (SAIG) mailbox. This eliminates the long wait (typically a two-day turnaround) for reports to be uploaded to the SAIG mailbox. Each report will now have one standard Report ID to create a one-to-one Report ID to Report Name relationship.
Challenges with Enrollment Reporting
It’s important to note that, as with any website overhaul, there have been issues impacting day- to- day operations. For instance, NSLDS Enrollment Functionality has significantly impaired a school’s ability to report students’ enrollment status information to NSLDS accurately and timely.
There have also been issues with the Enrollment Reporting Summary Report (SCHER1) providing enrollment reporting events out of chronological order, as well as delivering multiple submission and response updates for each month. The SCHER1 report is typically provided to auditors to review the timeliness of enrollment reporting during a specific fiscal year.
However, NSLDS encourages institutions to now provide auditors with either the Enrollment Submittal Tracking information or the Enrollment Submittal File Tracking Report (SCHET1). The Enrollment Submittal Tracking webpage can be found by selecting it from the dropdown menu under the “Enrollment” tab of the NSLDS Professional Access website. Once the query fields are filled out and the report is created, the user can then export it to Excel format. The SCHET1 report can be found in Cognos and exported to Excel format.
There have also been issues with the Enrollment History Update operating properly and, as a result, some students’ enrollment histories may show some gaps. NSLDS has suspended Enrollment History Update functionality for now. Still, schools, school servicers and enrollment providers can continue to submit updates to current enrollment information via the Enrollment Maintenance page and the Update Enrollment page on the NSLDS Professional Access website. For more information on the enrollment reporting issues, click here for the latest FSA Electronic Announcement from October 7, 2022. We recommend retaining this announcement along with the August 31, 2022 and September 22, 2022 Electronic Announcements as documentation for audit purposes.
Other Issues Found Since the Launch
The October 7, 2022 announcement noted other issues unrelated to enrollment reporting that have occurred since the site’s launch. NSLDS is still working to resolve the following:
- A delay in Perkins submittal files for schools that use a commercial Perkins servicer, due to the backlog that was caused by files being sent from the wrong TG mailbox.
- A wait for schools to receive responses about submissions of TRNINFIN files, Financial Aid History requests and Transfer Student Monitoring inform files. While NSLDS continues to look into this issue, it encourages schools to contact the NSLDS Support Center by calling 1-800-999-8219 or emailing email@example.com.
- Error messages in schools’ SAIG mailboxes when receiving the School Portfolio Report Files and Borrower Demographic Files, due to the files being sent from the wrong TG mailbox. The error messages are prompting school to contact CPS/SAIG support; however, NSLDS requests that customers avoid doing so until NSLDS corrects this issue.
- NSLDS continues to work to clear the backlog in sending reports that are delivered via SAIG to schools. It expects to have this issue corrected by the end of October, but schools should submit a new request if it needs more current data for a report. School should contact NSLDS Support Center if it doesn’t receive a requested report by the end of October.
- NSLDS is currently working to correct an issue in which students are incorrectly flagged for exceeding one of the aggregate loan limits. It expects this to be corrected in October.
NSLDS Resources for Professional Users
NSLDS offers resources to users to assist with working through the ongoing issues, as well as getting acclimated with the modernized website. See our recommended resources below:
- Training videos are available on the FSA Training Center. These brief videos walk through the website’s functionality and key features, such as the aid recipient tab, the financial aid dashboard, the enrollment tab and reports. To access these videos, professional users will need to log into the FSA Training Center, select “Systems Training” from the main menu bar, then select “NSLDS Training.”
- The NSLDS Reports for Schools Guide provides detailed information to assist professional users in familiarizing themselves with the NSLDS reports that are available, the different types of report formats and how to request each report.
- NSLDS is working to publish the new NSLDS Enrollment Reporting Guide and will notify the FSA community once it is available.
- Professional users can also contact the NSLDS Customer Support Center with any issues or questions by calling 1-800-999-8219 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
To view the full announcements for the modernization of the NSLDS website, click on the links throughout this article or listed below. NSLDS will continue to update user resources, user guides and documentation. We encourage you to monitor the FSA Knowledge Center for updated information about the NSLDS Professional Access website. If you have questions in the meantime, please contact our Title IV audit team: