- Yourself, if possible, your parent or guardian
- Most recent completed federal tax return (yours and your parents'/guardians'.) If you haven't filled out your taxes yet, estimate. You can provide exact numbers later.
- Current value of assets, including cash, checking, savings, investments, and value of business/farm
- Social Security numbers of student and parent(s)/guardian(s)
- Driver's license (if any)
- Alien registration card (if you are not a U.S. citizen)
Financial aid for college comes from a variety of government and private programs.
- Grants, which do not have to be repaid
- Scholarships, which do not have to be repaid
- Loans, which have to be repaid
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a form that must be filled out by every student seeking financial aid for attendance at any Title IV school in the nation. This form calculates a family's financial need—it creates an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) that is a measure of how much or little a family can support a student in college. For more information, or to fill out the FAFSA online, go to www.fafsa.ed.gov.
Eligibility for most types of financial aid is based on need, which is measured by the FAFSA. Most federal aid, including grants, work-study, and even loans, use the Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) in order to calculate how much aid to give each student. Many private scholarships also ask for FAFSA results in order to determine financial need.
You can create an FSA ID when logging into certain ED websites. Create an FSA ID now, at FSAID.ed.gov.
The FSA ID replaced the Federal Student Aid PIN on May 10, 2015. If you or your parents do not already have an FSA ID, we encourage you to apply for one. If you already have a PIN, you can link it to your new FSA ID by entering your PIN while registering for your FSA ID. (This will save you time when registering for your FSA ID.) If you've forgotten your PIN, don't worry, you can either enter the answer to your PIN "challenge question" during the FSA ID registration process to link your PIN, or you can just create your FSA ID without linking the two.
Tip: You may use your FSA ID for the duration of your school experience and beyond. The FSA ID stays the same.
No. The FAFSA must be filled out every year you plan to attend college. Your application information is saved online from year-to-year, making it easier to complete.
Yes, you can fill out the FAFSA online. You can sign the FAFSA electronically with an FSA ID, or print out, sign and mail in a paper signature page.