Applying for Aid
The Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) is used to apply for nearly all types of financial aid including federal, state, and institutional aid. The purpose of the FAFSA is to determine a family's ability to pay for college according to a federal calculation. The result is called the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). This figure is used by the financial aid office to determine how much and what types of aid may be awarded.
The U.S. Department of Education provides a yearly comprehensive booklet - Completing the FAFSA.
- Create an FSA ID
The student and at least one parent of a dependent undergraduate student will need an FSA ID. An FSA ID is a username and password that you must use to log in to certain U.S. Department of Education (ED) websites. Your FSA ID identifies you as someone who has the right to access your own personal information on ED websites such as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
- Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Step by step instructions are available on the FAFSA website including online help and contact information. The Federal Student Aid Information Center has extended hours and may be reached by phone at 1.800.4.FED.AID. Be sure to include OU's Federal School Code - 003184 - and your housing plans.
- Review the Student Aid Report
After completing the FAFSA, an email is sent by Federal Student Aid to the student at the email address provided on the FAFSA. This email includes a link to the Student Aid Report. The SAR includes instructions to review the information carefully and make any corrections necessary. If tax information was originally estimated, a request is sent by Federal Student Aid in mid-April to update your FAFSA information. Log into www.fafsa.ed.gov to make any corrections.
OU Financial Aid Services will normally receive your FAFSA results - the Student Aid Report (SAR) - 3 to 5 working days after completion or corrections are made.
Transferring Your IRS Tax Information Directly into Your FAFSA
You may have received an email from Federal Student Aid recommending that you use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to transfer tax information directly from the IRS into your FAFSA. Should the Data Retrieval Tool be unavailable for any reason, you can manually enter your tax information into your FAFSA.
** The IRS Data Retrieval Tool is available for the 2020-2021 FAFSA application cycle.
For instructions, please click here.