Financial Aid Information

Seniors: College Decision Help – Check it out!

Award Letter Comparison Tool – This simple tool compares up to five award letters side-by-side and helps students understand the actual cost of attendance for each school.

Breaking Down Your Award Letter – In this sample award letter, each section is clearly explained to help students make sense of their financial aid offers.

Negotiating for More Financial Aid – Your students may not know financial aid can be negotiable. Here are six effective phrases they can use when negotiating with a school.


Helpful FAFSA and Financial Aid presentations:

Step-by-Step (Page-by-page) Guide To Completing FAFSA Questions

Paying For College Video (CC available in 10 languages!)

Financial Aid 101 NACAC

HS FAFSA and Financial Aid Presentation Northern Virginia Community College

Federal Student Aid YouTube page (Many valuable How-To videos!)

Step by Step Financial Aid Guide for International Students 

Changes coming to the FAFSA for the 2023-2024 SY

Best Value Colleges for 2021



CSS Profile: Apply for institutional aid at over 400 colleges & Universities (not every school uses this).

General CSS Profile Link

CSS Profile Student Guide

CSS Profile Audio Presentation

List of Participating Schools


Are you an underclassman or parent of an underclassman looking to get a head start on college financial planning?

Use the FAFSA4caster to estimate your eligibility for federal student aid.

College Scorecard  is another helpful website. Not sure how to use the website: College-Scorecard-Guide

College ROI Report

Schools that meet full-need

It is a good idea to check out the net price calculator tool as well. You can search through the link but you can also find it on the college/university website.



Click here to begin filling out the FAFSA

Financial Aid and Undocumented Students 

Financial Aid and Undocumented Students (Spanish)


Different Types of Aid Available When you Fill Out the FAFSA:

Federal Student Grant Programs

Federal Student Grant Programs (Spanish)

Federal Student Loan Programs

Federal Student Loan Programs (Spanish)

Work Study:

Types of Federal Student Aid Video

Click here for a full page of resources dedicated to helping fill out the FAFSA


Financial aid for undocumented students and eligibility for in-state tuition:

Virginia Alternative State Aid Application

VASA Application Demonstration


VASA Checklist

VASA Flyer Spanish

VASA Flyer English



Financial Aid Award Letters

Interested in comparing award letters? These tools can help:

This guide offers the basics on financial aid award letters and a glossary of common terms:

These tools provide students an online worksheet to assist with understanding costs, types of aid, and net price:

Net Price Calculator

  • What is a Net Price Calculator?

    Net price calculators are available on a college’s or university’s website and allow prospective students to enter information about themselves to find out what students like them paid to attend the institution in the previous year, after taking grants and scholarship aid into account.

  • What does Net Price mean?

    Net Price is the amount that a student pays to attend an institution in a single academic year AFTER subtracting scholarships and grants the student receives. Scholarships and grants are forms of financial aid that a student does not have to pay back.

Academic Common Market

The Academic Common Market (ACM) is a tuition-savings program that is administered by the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) and 16 member states. The arrangement allows students to pay in-state tuition rates at out-of-state public institutions while studying in select programs not available in their home state. The following states are partners – Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia. States and institutions have the discretion to remove or restrict its participation and access to degree programs at any time.  For more information visit: