All Financial Aid Articles

A father and daughter reviewing how 529 plan affects the FAFSA
financial aid

How a 529 Plan Affects your FAFSA

Calculating the amount of financial aid to award a student can be tricky. Many elements are connected and affect each other. One such example is 529 savings plans and the FAFSA. Your 529 plan affects your FAFSA and how much aid you can receive. Here’s a rundown of those details. What is a 529 Plan? …
Student taking an online test at home.
financial aid

Is There College Financial Aid For Homeschooled Students?

Financial aid helps students pay for higher education. That includes students who studied at home. Homeschooling has come a long way since a few years ago in terms of college admissions as well as financial aid. Today, colleges welcome homeschool students as long as they meet the school’s eligibility criteria. As for financial aid for …
A college student applying for a stimulus check on her phone.
financial aid

What is the Student Aid Index?

The Student Aid Index is the number a college will use to determine how much financial aid you’re eligible for. It used to be known as the “Expected Family Contribution” or the EFC, but it recently underwent a name change. Here’s a rundown of why the change happened and how the Student Aid Index, or …
The Golden Gate Bridge at sunrise.
financial aid

How To Overcome Financial Aid “Gapping”

To make the cost of college more affordable, many schools offer financial aid packages to accepted students. These packages are customized for each student based on the information submitted through the FAFSA. Schools usually try and cover 100% of the student’s financial need through a mix of grants, scholarships, work study and loans. However, many …
student shaking hands with college official
financial aid

What is the Difference Between an Offer Letter and an Acceptance Letter?

‘Offer letter’ and ‘acceptance letter’ are two terms you will come across frequently while researching the college admission process. Many people use these terms interchangeably, which is not correct. An offer letter is not the same as an acceptance letter. Here are the vital distinctions between the two. What is an Acceptance Letter? An acceptance …
Student thinking about offer letters
financial aid

FAQs About College Offer Letters

When you’re accepted into a college, they will put together a customized financial aid package for you. This is known as a college offer letter. Some colleges may call it a merit letter or financial aid award letter. Regardless of the exact name they use, all acceptance letters serve the same purpose. What’s included in an …
High school student thinking about financial aid
financial aid

3 Critical Financial Aid Tips For High School Seniors

Financial aid may be the last thing on your mind when you’re in high school. You’re already juggling a lot. But the sooner you understand how financial aid works, the better. Here are 3 critical financial aid tips for high school seniors. Why it’s So Important to Start Exploring Financial Aid in High School College …
Student updating their FAFSA online
financial aid

When and How to Update Your FAFSA Information

The FAFSA is the form college students fill to get financial aid from the federal government. All personal and financial information that you fill in your form must be accurate at the time of submitting of your FAFSA. The federal government uses this information to calculate your EFC or Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Your EFC is …
Appeal Award Letter
financial aid

7 Steps To Appealing An Award Letter For More Aid

When a college accepts your application, they will send you an award letter (also known as an offer letter). This will detail the amount of money a school is willing to give you in financial aid. If you think you didn’t get enough financial aid, you can appeal for more. Just to be clear, you cannot …
college award letters
financial aid

College Award Letter Mistakes To Avoid

An award letter contains detailed information about how much financial assistance that college is offering you. It includes all grants, scholarships, student loans, and work-study programs that you’re being offered. Along with the breakdown of the different types of financial aid, the award letter also contains the respective award amounts. Reviewing award letters can be …