What’s So Great About Doing the FAFSA Online?
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available to fill out online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. The site is known as FAFSA on the Web. You should use FAFSA on the Web instead of a paper FAFSA because:
• You’ll get your results as much as three weeks faster than someone who uses the paper FAFSA. Speed is important when schools are awarding limited financial aid resources.
• You have instant access to an estimated Expected Family Contribution.
• You can answer questions that help determine whether you will receive an Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG). The paper FAFSA doesn’t ask those questions, so paper filers who might be eligible for an ACG have an extra step in the process.
• FAFSA on the Web has detailed help screens for every question.
• You can get live, private online help from a customer service representative.
• Based on your answers to certain questions, FAFSA on theWeb skips other questions that don’t apply to you.
• FAFSA on the Web notices when you’ve supplied answers that contradict each other, and it gives you the chance to correct your mistakes before submitting the information.
• Because of the online help and the fact that FAFSA on the Web checks for contradictory answers, your online application is less likely than a paper FAFSA to be delayed by the need for corrections.
• FAFSA on the Web uses encryption, which means the information you send to the site is turned into code so that anyone attempting to access your information will not be able to read it.
Okay, I believe you! What do I do now?
• Get a personal identification number called a PIN at www.pin.ed.gov.
• Find out what documents you need using the checklist on page 1 of the FAFSA on the Web Worksheet at www.FederalStudentAid.ed.gov/worksheet.
• Fill out the FAFSA on the Web Worksheet at www.FederalStudentAid.ed.gov/worksheet (this step is optional; the worksheet was designed for students who feel more comfortable filling something out on paper before going online to enter their application information).
• Fill out the FAFSA at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
• Keep an eye on your e-mail inbox for a response and further instructions.
Download this fact sheet at www.FederalStudentAid.ed.gov/pubs 2009–10