FAQ for Financial Aid Funding

Financial Aid FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Must I be accepted for admission before I apply for financial aid?
A. No. Apply for financial aid any time. We will begin processing your FAFSA as soon as we receive it; however, you must be formally admitted before we will determine your award offer.

Q. Should I wait until my taxes are filed before I do my FAFSA?
A. We encourage you to complete your taxes as early as possible so that your FAFSA is accurate. However, if you or your parents cannot complete the taxes before March 2, use your best estimate of income and taxes. Just indicate on your FAFSA that you are using estimated figures. Once you file your taxes, you can make corrections to your FAFSA application if necessary.

Q. When will I hear about my financial aid?
A. Most of our communications regarding your financial aid application and awards are sent electronically. Check your email for any critical deadlines. Some students are required to submit copies of tax returns or other information to our office before we can determine their awards.

Q. Do I have to be full-time to receive financial aid?
A. No. You will qualify for most types of financial aid if you are enrolled at least half-time.

Q. Do I have to apply for financial aid each year?
A. Yes. Your financial situation must be reassessed each year.

Q. What is an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) and when do I provide it?
A. The "expected family contribution" is based on your family’s resources, the number of family members and the number in college. The EFC is the amount you and your family are expected to pay toward your educational costs. The federal need analysis formula determines the EFC and assumes the following: Parents have the primary responsibility to pay for their children’s education. Students also have a responsibility to help pay for their own educations.

The EFC is not an amount that is "due" at one specific time. It can be contributed to your educational costs in a variety of ways such as assisting in the payment of fees each semester, buying books and supplies or providing housing, transportation costs or other miscellaneous educational costs. The EFC is the amount of your total costs that will not be covered by need-based financial aid. However, there are non-need-based financial aid programs, including some scholarships, the Federal Stafford Unsubsidized Loan and the Federal PLUS Loan (see Stafford and PLUS Loans).

Q. What is the maximum financial aid I may receive during an academic year?
A. Your total financial aid, including scholarships and loans, may not exceed your cost of attendance. You are responsible for notifying our office if you receive outside aid such as a scholarship, fee waiver, fee reimbursement, or grant. We will review your total financial aid package and determine if any adjustments are required.

Apply for Federal Student Aid

AAU helps students every step of the way. Learn how to apply for Federal Student Aid funding to be considered for financial aid awards.

Federal Student Aid Award

Once an AAU student completes the FAFSA, they will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) that summarizes the data from the FAFSA and determines the student’s official Expected Family Contribution (EFC).

Federal Student Aid Eligibility

To receive federal student aid, you must meet certain requirements. Find out exact details of federal student aid eligibility.

Federal Student Aid Types

AAU participates in the grants and loans available through Federal Student Aid administered by the U.S. Department of Education.

Financial Aid Resources

Explore the AAU Financial Aid resources page for helpful phone numbers and links on FA funding.