Filling out the FAFSA is the first step in determining your federal financial aid eligibility. As long as you are a documented US citizen, you should ALWAYS fill out the FAFSA, even if you do not think you qualify for financial aid.

You can begin the FAFSA on October 1, 2016 for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Before you fill out your FAFSA, you will need the following information:

  • Your Social Security Number
  • Your Alien Registration Number (if you are not a U.S. citizen)
  • Your most recent federal income tax returns, W-2s, and other records of money earned. (You may be able to transfer your federal tax return information into your FAFSA using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool)
  • Bank statements and records of investments (if applicable)
  • Records of untaxed income (if applicable)

If you are a male under 25 years old, you will need to register with the Selective Service System.

  1. To begin, visit the FAFSA website ( and choose “Start a New FAFSA” (or Login, if you have previously filled out your FAFSA).
  2. You will need to create your FSA ID. Choose “Create an FSA ID” to begin.
  3. Continue through the application, entering your financial information as well as your parent/guardian/s information. If you get stuck, read the help box on the side of each page for definitions and helpful tips.

Helpful FAFSA information:

Who is my parent when I fill out the FAFSA? If your parents are….

  • Never married: Use the information for the parent who you lived with the most during the last 12 months. If your time was split equally, choose the parent which provided the most financial support.
  • Unmarried & living together: Use the information from both parents.
  • Married: Use the information for both parents.
  • Remarried: Use the information for your parent and stepparent.
  • Divorced or separated: Use the information for the parent who you lived with the most during the last 12 months, or the parent who provided the most financial support.
  • Widowed: Your parent