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Financial Aid
Applying For Financial Aid

To apply for financial aid, you will need to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

FAFSA:  Basic Facts

What is it?
FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The federal government uses this form to determine your eligibility for financial aid which includes grants, work-study, and loans.

Why fill it out?
The FAFSA is used to determine how much aid you are eligible for by calculating your Expected Family Contribution (EFC).  A school cannot process your financial aid without it.

What is EFC?
EFC stands for Expected Family Contribution, which is the amount your family can be expected to contribute each year towards your college costs.

What type of aid can I expect to receive?
Your prospective college will try to meet your financial aid needs through federal and state programs which include grants, work-study, and loans.

Filling out the FAFSA

Step 1: Get Organized

A. You will need the following documents in order to complete the FAFSA:

-Social Security Number and parents' SSN (if dependent)

-2014 federal income tax return (1040, 1040A, 1040EZ, etc.) or W2s if you did not file a tax return if applying for the 2015-2016 college year. 

-Parents' 2014 income tax return (if dependent) if applying for the 2015-2016 college year. 

-Driver's license (if applicable)

-2014 untaxed income records (if applicable)  if applying for the 2015-2016 college year.

-Current bank statements

-Current mortgage and investment records (if applicable)

-Alien registration card (if not a U. S. citizen)

B. Plan how to sign your online FAFSA.

You will need to "sign" your online FAFSA.  If you are a dependent student, both you and your parent will need to "sign" the FAFSA.  You will "sign" by using an FSA ID (Federal Student Aid Identification), as will your parent.  It is recommended that you get your FSA ID before you start filling in the FAFSA (so that when you are ready to submit the form, you and a parent will have the FSA ID  in hand).  To get your FSA ID, go to https://fafsa.ed.gov/ and apply for an FSA ID.  Remember that if you are a dependent student, both you and a parent will need an FSA ID.  Your FSA ID will be emailed to you.

(You will be using this FSA ID to access your FAFSA records which are held by the federal Department of Education.)

Step 2: Complete the FAFSA

Go to https://fafsa.ed.gov/ to complete the FAFSA.
Fill in all required boxes.  Refer to tax return line numbers where applicable.
Enter the six digit school code for school (s) you plan on attending.  The Collin College school code is 016792.  You will want to print a copy of your completed FAFSA for your records.

While you may fill out a paper version of the FAFSA, it is highly recommended that you submit the FAFSA online.  It will speed up your process significantly by submitting it online.

Step 3: Review your Student Aid Report

FAFSA will send you a Student Aid Report (SAR) in 2-3 weeks via e-mail or mail.  The SAR is verification that your FAFSA was received.  Review it carefully for incorrect information.

What if I need to make corrections?

You can fix the errors by changing the information on the SAR and returning your SAR to FAFSA for further processing.  Or you can go online to https://fafsa.ed.gov/ (use your FSA ID) and make corrections.

What if I don't receive a SAR?

Call 1-800-433-3243 (1-800-4-FED-AID) if you do not receive your SAR in 4-5 weeks.  You will be asked to provide your name, SSN and DOB for verification.  Hearing impaired?  Call the TTY line: 1-800-730-8913.

Step 4: Follow up with the school (s) you plan on attending


Complete all financial aid paperwork required by that school.  Once all paperwork is received, it typically takes two to four weeks to process (four to six weeks during busier times).

Step 5: Review award letter and accept aid

Follow all instructions in award letter to acknowledge or accept the aid awarded.  Your award is not "automatically" deposited into your account at a college; you must officially accept the award by notifying the Financial Aid office of the college you plan to attend.  Most colleges provide an online way to do this.  Check with your college to find out how you are to accept your award. 

Financial Aid Calculators

FAFSA Forecaster: - using the FAFSA Forecaster, you and your family will receive an early estimate of eligibility for federal student aid.


Scholarships and Scholarship Search Engines

Collin College Foundation - it is the Foundation's goal that every student have access to the educational excellence provided at Collin.

CollegeNET -- http://www.collegenet.com

FinAid -- http://www.finaid.org

Free Scholarship Search -- http://www.scholarships.com/

Scholly -- There is an app for that. http://www.myscholly.com/

SchoolSoup -- http://www.schoolsoup.com

Latino College Dollars -- http://latinocollegedollars.org/

Financial Aid for Minority Students -- http://www.onlineschools.org/financial-aid/minority/