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Nitro Knowledge. Your Guide to Paying for College.


When you’re ready to fill out your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), you’ll need to have some important information on hand. To be eligible for financial aid, you must show proof of your identity, citizenship status, earnings (or parents’ earnings) and other financial information.

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In most cases, you will need to re-apply for federal student aid each year you are in school. But does that mean completing a new Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) per semester or per year? Because your or your family’s financial information can change from year to year, your eligibility for federal or state aid or institutional merit-based aid can change as well. That means you will need to fill out and submit a FAFSA each year so make sure you check when the FAFSA is due because deadlines can change.

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When filing your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), meeting key deadlines is as important as ensuring all your information is accurate. And, at state and college levels, filing your FAFSA early can mean more money from more sources – so don’t wait until the last minute!

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While the FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, helps you secure valuable federal and state support to pay for school, close to 400 private schools and scholarship programs require both the FAFSA and the College Scholarship Service (CSS) PROFILE form. While many questions are the same on both forms, the CSS PROFILE requires more detailed information and weights assets and income differently than the FAFSA. This allows financial aid counselors at the institutions that use the CSS PROFILE greater freedom to grant aid based on a student's particular circumstances.

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If you’re planning to attend college soon, you’ve no doubt heard about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA is your connection to everything that pertains to financial aid. Consider it your starting point to getting the money you need for college. And understand that some important changes to the FAFSA are now in effect that make the financial aid application process easier.

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When you fill out your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), you must list one to 10 schools that you want to receive the financial details on your FAFSA. Once you submit your FAFSA, you and the schools you list will receive a copy of your student aid report (SAR). Those schools will use the SAR to determine your eligibility for federal and school aid. Like everything else with the FAFSA, there are specific things you need to know about listing schools, including how to list more than 10 schools.

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