How award amounts are determined

Aid from most of our programs is awarded based on financial need. Federal aid funds are limited, so the total amount you receive might fall short of the amount you’re eligible for. To determine financial need, we subtract from the cost of attendance the following amounts: the expected family contribution, any Pell Grant amount you’re eligible for, and other financial aid you’ll receive. If anything is left over, you’re considered to have financial need for additional federal student aid.

What is "expected family contribution"?

We use an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) number when we determine your need. The EFC is a measure of your family’s financial strength and is calculated from the information reported on your FAFSA. Your EFC will appear on your Student Aid Report (SAR). The EFC is calculated according to a formula established by law. Your family’s income, assets, and benefits are all considered, as well as your family size and the number of family members who will attend a college.

How is "family" defined?

This depends on if you're a dependent or independent student. Read more: Am I dependent or independent?.

  • If you're a dependent student, you will report your and your parents' information.
  • If you're an independent student, you will report your own information (and, if you're married, your spouse's).

Cost of attendance

To determine financial need, we use a standard, full-time budget. In other words, we use the same budget for all students. This doesn't necessarily reflect your costs, nor will you be billed for these amounts.

Standard full-time budgets

2014-15 Academic Year: costs for a student not living with parent

 Costs 1 Term 2 Terms 3 Terms 4 Terms
Tuition and fees $1,187 $2,374 $3,561 $4,748
Books and supplies $581 $1,162 $1,743 $2,324
Room and board $2,477 $4,954 $7,431 $9,908
Transportation $539 $1,078 $1,617 $2,156
Personal $567 $1,134 $1,701 $2,268
Total expenses $5,351 $10,702 $16,053 $21,404

2014-15 Academic Year: costs for a student living with parent

 Costs 1 Term 2 Terms 3 Terms 4 Terms
Tuition and fees $1,187 $2,374 $3,561 $4,748
Books and supplies $581 $1,162 $1,743 $2,324
Room and board $1,099 $2,198 $3,297 $4,396
Transportation $539 $1,078 $1,617 $2,156
Personal $484 $968 $1,452 $1,936
Total expenses $3,890 $7,780 $11,670 $15,560

2013-14 Academic Year: costs for a student not living with parent

 Costs 1 Term 2 Terms 3 Terms 4 Terms
Tuition and fees $1,055 $2,114 $3,165 $4,220
Books and supplies $550 $1,100 $1,650 $2,200
Room and board $2,410 $4,820 $7,230 $9,640
Transportation $524 $1,048 $1,572 $2,096
Personal $552 $1,104 $1,656 $2,208
Total expenses $5,091 $10,182 $15,273 $20,364

2013-14 Academic Year: costs for a student living with parent

 Costs 1 Term 2 Terms 3 Terms 4 Terms
Tuition and fees $1,055 $2,114 $3,165 $4,220
Books and supplies $550 $1,100 $1,650 $2,200
Room and board $1,069 $2,138 $3,207 $4,276
Transportation $524 $1,048 $1,572 $2,096
Personal $471 $942 $1,413 $1,884
Total expenses $3,669 $7,338 $11,007 $14,676

How your enrollment affects your financial aid

In most cases, your original financial aid award will reflect full-time enrollment for the full academic year. Your actual financial aid eligibility will be based on your enrollment at the end of end of the 2nd Tuesday of each term (or at the time of disbursement, if you accepted your award after that Tuesday). We will revise your award to reflect the terms you will be enrolled. Enrollment less than full time may cause financial aid funds to be reduced or canceled.

Waitlisted classes do not count toward your enrollment status. Read more about waitlists for classes.

Enrollment status Credits per term
Full time 12 or more
¾ time 9 to 11
Half time 6 to 8
¼ time 1 to 5

Minimum enrollment for financial aid

You do not need to be enrolled full time to receive financial aid. This table shows minimum enrollment for different financial aid programs. (Enrollment levels aren't the only thing that determine eligibility - you still have to demonstrate financial need.)

Financial aid program 6 credits less than 6 credits
Direct loan, subsidized and unsubsidized x  
PLUS loan x  
Perkins loan x  
Pell Grant   x
Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant x  
Work study x