BPPE Regulations

The Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE) website states:

"California Education Code (CEC) 94811 defines an ability-to-benefit (ATB) student as a student who does not have a certificate of graduation from a school providing secondary education, or a recognized

equivalent of that certificate. Under CEC 94904 (a), an institution is required, prior to executing an

enrollment agreementwith an ATB student, to have the student take and pass an independently

administered exmanination from the list of examinations prescibed by the United States Department

of Education (USDE).


The CELSA is inexpensive and easy to administer. It consists of 75 multiple choice questions and takes 45 minutes to complete. Hundreds of schools use the CELSA for ATB to qualify their students. It is not necessary to offer ESL classes in order to use the CELSA for ATB. If the students have English as their second language, the CELSA can be used to determine their ability to benefit from instruction.


The steps to implementing the test are easy. You need to hire an Independent Testing Administrator. That person needs to read our brief CELSA ATB User's Guide and take a short quiz (the CELSA TEST ADMINISTER CERTIFICATION QUESTIONNAIRE FOR ATB). The tester mails or faxes the Independent Testing Administrator form and

and the Questionnaire to us and we then certify the school and the tester.


You have two options:

1) "paper/pencil" test: test are taken on a special scanform and mailed to us. We score the test the day we receive it and automatically email you the results. The cost is $195 per year for the site license and $12.50 per student. This cost includes the student answer sheets, cover sheet, mailing envelopes and all test scoring and reporting. Test booklets need to be ordered separately and usually last about 5 years. Please see Order form for details. 


2) computer delivered option: the test is taken on a computer and the results are immediately available to the school. There is an $800 annual charge for the software and the individual cost to the student is a $12.50 fee.


BPPE governed schools that offer degrees or diplomas cannot accept students without high school diplomas or equivalent unless the student passes an ATB test


The CELSA is an approved United States Department of Education and BPPE Ability to Benefit test

for students who have English as their second language.