How Financial Aid is Awarded


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All colleges provide financial aid based on the amount of "Financial Need" a student and his family has. And Financial Need is determined by the following formula or Student Aid Methodology:


Cost of Attendance

- Expected Family Contribution

= Financial Need


Cost of Attendance is a figure that's estimated by the school, that includes the cost of tuition, fees, room, board, books and supplies, as well as an allowance for personal expenses and transportation for a full 9-month academic year.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is the amount of money a student and his family is expected to contribute for the year towards the student's cost of attendance. When you apply for financial aid, the information you provide on your application(s) is used to calculate your EFC.

Financial Need, which is calculated by subtracting the Expected Family Contribution from the Cost of Attendance, is the amount of aid a student is eligible to receive. This is the bottom line figure that every Financial Aid Offer will look at and try to fill when preparing an aid package.

The amount and type of aid you are awarded by any one college will most likely differ from what is offered by other colleges you apply to because, among other things, the costs of attendance are different, which creates a different "Financial Need". But the amount you and your family are expected to contribute (your EFC) should be roughly the same regardless of which college you attend (or slightly higher at certain private colleges).

As you can see, the lower your EFC, the greater your Financial Need and the more aid you are qualified to receive. The good news is that there are many simple strategies you can utilize to legally lower your EFC. A recommended resource is "The No B.S. Guide To Getting Maximum College Financial Aid".

Details can be found at:


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