FAFSA Tips

 

To ensure that The University of Iowa receives the information from your FAFSA, list "The University of Iowa" and the federal school code "001892" on the FAFSA.

Use your name and social security number as they appear on your social security card. If you social security card needs to be updated, contact your local Social Security Administration Office.

Although it is preferable to use a completed federal income tax return to file the FAFSA, you may use reasonable estimates. This will allow you to complete the FAFSA earlier.

Be sure to sign your FAFSA.

For additional tips, go to the Common Errors on Financial Aid Applications section of the FinAid website.

 

Filing the FAFSA

To be considered for the maximum amount of financial aid, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) should be completed as soon as possible after January 1 for the upcoming academic year. The FAFSA can be completed using estimated income information if actual information is not yet available.

Awards are made on a first-come, first-served basis. Submit all required documents as soon as possible. Although students can apply for financial aid throughout the year, funding for some programs may be depleted before a student is awarded. The student may meet the qualifications for certain types of aid, but not be awarded that aid because the funding has run out.

Complete the FAFSA online at www.fafsa.gov. You may want to print a FAFSA on the Web Worksheet. The FAFSA on the Web Worksheet allows you to read and complete the FAFSA questions prior to entering your information online.

You will need to use a U.S. Department of Education Personal Identification Number (PIN) when completing the FAFSA on the web. Students and parents must request their own PINs. The PIN serves as your identifier to let you access your personal information in various U.S. Department of Education systems. You can obtain a PIN at the U.S. Department of Education PIN web site at www.pin.ed.gov.

The Office of Student Financial Aid will receive the results from your on-line FAFSA one to two weeks after you submit it.

If you are unable to complete the FAFSA on the web, you can either

            • print a PDF version of the FAFSA (available at www.fafsa.ed.gov) or
                  •  
            • obtain a paper FAFSA by calling the Federal Student Aid Information Center toll-free at 1-800-433-3243
             

The Office of Student Financial Aid will receive the results from your PDF or paper FAFSA approximately three to four weeks after it is mailed to the federal processor.

A tip-sheet (PDF) has been developed by the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) to help federal student aid applicants in unique situations [e.g. single parents, Temporary Assistance for Needy Family (TANF) recipients, wards of the court, foster youth, etc.] answer specific questions on the FAFSA.  NASFAA has also composed a list of tips and common mistakes to avoid (PDF) when filing the FAFSA.

If you have questions when completing the FAFSA, contact the Federal Student Aid office via phone, live chat, or email.