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what does the FAFSA do?

chidimmachidimma Posts: 1,217Registered User Senior Member
Does it take away from the amount that your family spends on colege or does it take away from the amount that a school gives you? My question isn't very clear...
Post edited by chidimma on

Replies to: what does the FAFSA do?

  • esmeraldaesmeralda Posts: 150Registered User Junior Member
    It takes away from the amount that a school gives you, I believe, but you should still submit it.
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 35,815Registered User Senior Member
    The FAFSA doesn't do anything but compute an expected family contribution (EFC) for college students. This EFC is reported to the colleges and universities. Awards for need based aid (both school based and federal) are made based on the FAFSA computations. The FAFSA itself doesn't "take away" or "give" any money. BUT it is used to compute need base financial aid awards at most universities. Some also require the CSS Profile and/or their own finaid forms in addition to the FAFSA.
  • BrandonBrandon Posts: 53Registered User Junior Member
    The FAFSA doesn't take away anything from anyone. It is a tool that is used by schools to determine how much money a family can contribute to their child's education. The government only has so much money that they can give to any one person to attend college. They feel that if any family is able to contribute to their child's education, then they should because it won't be taking money away from a family that actually needs it.

    The FAFSA doesn't only determine the EFC, but it also lets the school know other things that could count against your receiving need-based aid from the government: previous undergraduates degree, not having registered for the selective servicee, citizenship issues, drug/police record, etc. So, not only do they want to give money to families that need it, but they don't want to give money to people that already have a degree in something, that aren't a valid citizen, that is a threat to society, and that doesn't want to do their duties in society. i am probably being a little more harsher than they are, but that's just the way it is.

    Anyhow, the FAFSA is normally used to just determine the amount of need-based aid that you receive from the governent, but many schools use it to determine the amount of aid that they will give you as well. However, a lot of private schools are using the CSS Profile to determine the amount of aid their school will give you.

    Another reason is that some schools require the FAFSA to be filled out in order to be eligible for merit-based scholarships that are offered by the school or its alumni. So, even if you don't need need-based aid, then it is good to fill out the FAFSA.

    A lot of things required for financial aid seem superfluous, but they are really just trying to make sure they're helping people that actually need help. Funds are limited, and they can't help everyone. So, that is the FAFSA explained in the simplest way that I can think to explain it.
  • chidimmachidimma Posts: 1,217Registered User Senior Member
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