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Free Application for Federal Student Aid

Financial aid from the federal government to help you pay for education expenses at an eligible college, technical school, vocational school, or graduate school. There are three categories of federal student aid: grants, work-study,  and loans.

Who gets federal student aid?

Every student, who meets certain eligibility requirements, can get some type of financial aid regardless of age or family income. If you have questions about what makes you eligible to receive aid you can find the basic eligibility requirements here. 

Complete the FAFSA, online or in print. The simplified online application is available at See our checklist to make sure you have everything you need.

When do I complete the FAFSA?

Apply as soon as possible after Oct. 1 of the year you plan on attending college.

FAFSA Online Application

Types of Federal Aide, Grants and Work Study

Repayment Plans Information

FAFSA4caster - Provide some basic information and FAFSA4caster will estimate your eligibility for federal student aid. Your estimate will be shown in the "College Cost Worksheet" where you can also provide estimated amounts of other student aid and savings that can go towards your college education.

Here’s your checklist!

You should have the following information and documents with you as you fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA):

  • Your Social Security number
  • Your parents’ Social Security numbers if you are providing parent information*
  • Your driver’s license number if you have one
  • Your Alien Registration Number if you are not a U.S. citizen 
  • Federal tax information or tax returns** including IRS W-2 information, for you and for your parents if you are providing parent information
    • If you have not yet filed an income tax return, complete and submit the FAFSA  using estimated tax information
    • Use income records for the year prior to the academic year for which you are applying:  for instance, if you are filling out the 2016–17 FAFSA, you will need 2016 tax information
  • Records of your untaxed income, such as child support received, interest income, and veterans noneducation benefits, for you, and for your parents if you are providing parent information
  • Information on cash; savings and checking account balances; investments, including real estate but not including the home in which you live; and business and farm assets for you, and for your parents if you are providing parent information

* Not sure whether you will need to put your parents’ information on the FAFSA? Check out “Am IDependent or Independent?” at or call 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243).

  ** If you file your taxes before filling out your FAFSA online, you might be able to have your tax information automatically retrieved from the Internal Revenue Service and inserted in your FAFSA.

FAFSA will walk you through the process.