Federal Financial Aid (FAFSA) and CSS Profile Instructions

Federal Financial Aid (FAFSA) and CSS Profile Instructions

Financial aid includes all types of money, loans, and work-study programs offered to a student to help pay college tuition costs and living expenses. 
 
 
The FAFSA and TAP financial aid applications go live each school year, on October 1st. Every college/institution has a different deadline for when they want the FAFSA and TAP completed by. You would need to look up these deadlines once you make your college list. 
 
 
Some private colleges also require a financial aid application called the CSS Profile. https://cssprofile.collegeboard.org/
 
 
Here you will find detailed instructions on how to complete the FAFSA and the CSS Profile. Note that only some private schools require the CSS Profile. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

To complete these applications, you will need the following documents (for the graduating class of 2021):

  • W-2 Forms and other records of money earned for the prior year
  • Federal Income Tax Return from 2019 (MUST be from 2 years prior)* - IRS Form 1040, 1040A, 1040EZ, foreign tax return, or tax return for Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia or Palau
  • Untaxed income records* - Social Security, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, welfare, or veterans benefits records
  • Records of savings, stocks, bonds, trusts, and other investments
  • Current bank statements
  • Current mortgage information
  • Your most recent business and investment mortgage information, business and farm records, stock, bond, and other investment records
 

Financial Aid Webinars

https://studentaid.gov/resources#webinars

https://studentaid.gov/resources

 

 

Webinars

Resource

English

Spanish

Preparing Financially for College webinar

Webinar
Transcript

Available only in English

Tips for Understanding and Comparing Financial Aid Offers webinar

Webinar
Transcript

Available only in English

FAFSA® Process: Filling Out the FAFSA Form webinar

Webinar
Transcript

Available only in English

Top Five Tips to Complete the FAFSA® Form webinar

Webinar

Available only in English

What to do After Filling Out the FAFSA® Form webinar

Webinar

Available only in English

Understanding the Basics of Public Service Loan Forgiveness webinar

Webinar

Available only in English

Direct PLUS Loan Basics for Parents and Grad Students

Webinar

Available only in English

Finding the Right Federal Loan Repayment Plan webinar

Webinar

Available only in English

2020–21 FAFSA® Demo Line by Line webinar

Webinar

Available only in English

 

 

Additional Resources:

 
 

Thinking about taking out a student loan? Before you take that step, make sure you are well informed about how taking out a student loan can impact you in the long run. Check out the resources at TheSimpleDollar.com, a website devoted to helping people make more informed financial decisions. They have a number of resources that can provide you and your family in depth knowledge about student loans, as well as strategies to help manage debt. 

http://www.thesimpledollar.com/student-loan-consolidation-guide/#the-rising-cost-of-college-and-student-debt