What is Initial cohort ?
Initial cohort meaning A specific group of individuals established for tracking purposes. For the Graduation Rates (GR) and Outcome Measures (OM) components of IPEDS, the initial cohort is defined as the enrollment count before removing revisions and exclusions of all degree/certificate-seeking students who enter in either (1) the fall term of a given academic year, or (2) between September 1st and August 31st of the following year. For the GR component of IPEDS, the initial cohort is only for full-time, first-time students. For OM, all undergraduates are placed in one of four initial cohorts: full-time, first-time; part-time, first-time; full-time, non-first-time; and part-time, non-first time.
reference: IPEDS Data Collectrion System – Glossary