The BYU-Idaho Financial Aid Office is here to help you understand all aspects of the financial aid process, including the different aid options that are available. Some of these options include federal financial aid (Pell Grant & Direct Student Loans), scholarships, Idaho Work Study, etc.
Financial aid funds are to be used for educational expenses. This includes:
- Tuition and class fees
- Books and supplies
- Living expenses, including, but not limited to:
- Clothing and personal items
- Travel costs to and from BYU-Idaho
Financial aid is not to be used to go on vacations, purchase cars, etc. These funds are intended to assist you in obtaining your education. Internships and Study Abroad programs through BYU-Idaho are considered educational expenses.
- Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the priority deadline
- Check your BYU-I financial aid student portal approximately 5 business days after you’ve submitted your FAFSA to ensure it’s been received
- Continue to watch your financial aid student portal and submit any requested documents to the Financial Aid Office
- If you completed your FAFSA by the priority deadline, your financial aid should show in your student portal approximately one month before your assigned track begins
Avoid the following common FAFSA errors:
- All fields on the FAFSA should be filled out with a “0” or “not applicable where possible.” Leaving fields blank can cause miscalculations
- Round all amounts to the nearest dollar and do not use decimal points
- For example, $5236.64 would be entered as 5237 on your FAFSA
- The social security number and/or driver’s license number you enter on the FAFSA must be the correct one assigned to you. Do not make up an identification number
- The name (first, middle, last) must match the name the Social Security Administration (SSA) has on file for you when your FAFSA is processed. If you’ve recently been married and have not changed your name through the SSA more than 8 weeks ago, use your maiden name when submitting your FAFSA. If your name does not match, your FAFSA cannot be processed until it does, which will cause significant delays in your financial aid. For more information, visit the Newly Married Students page
- Temporary addresses should not be listed on the FAFSA. Please use your permanent address, not your apartment while you’re at BYU-Idaho
- Use the financial information from your Federal Income Tax Return when completing the FAFSA
- Children that will be born before June 30th of the award year need to be reported as a member of your household if more than half of the child’s support will be paid by you. Report them as being in your household even if they are not yet born when you complete the FAFSA
- Use your FSA ID to sign your FFSA. If you are a dependent student, your parents will also need to sign and submit your FAFSA with their own FSA ID
- The FAFSA is a free application. Do not use sites such as FAFSA.com, which require payment to complete your application. Save your money for college!
FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. By completing this application, the Department of Education determines your eligibility to receive Pell Grant and/or Direct student loans. You must complete this application each year in order to be considered for federal aid.
It is important to understand that for federal financial aid purposes, the academic year begins with the summer session. For example, the 2017-2018 FAFSA encompasses the following semesters:
- Summer Session 2017
- Fall Semester 2017
- Winter Semester 2018
- Spring Semester 2018
If you are a student on the Winter/Spring track, you would still need to complete the 2017-2018 FAFSA even though you don’t start school until January 2018.
It is important to be aware that the FAFSA application may be open for two different academic years at the same time. Make sure you select the correct year for the semesters you plan to attend.
Once you have submitted the FAFSA, you will be given a general estimate of the aid you should expect to receive, based on the information you provided. Please know that this is ONLY an initial estimate and it may change once your FAFSA is completely processed.
The FAFSA4caster is a great tool to receive a general estimate of what federal financial aid you could qualify for if you completed the FAFSA. Be aware that you will only be asked a few of the questions that are on the FAFSA, so the amount shown could change once your FAFSA is completely processed.
Please remember that your federal financial aid award is based on full-time enrollment, or 12 program applicable credits each semester. If you plan to enroll less than full-time, you may still receive financial aid at a reduced amount based on your original financial aid award.
It is important to know that your dependency status is not determined by whether or not your parents claim you on their taxes as a dependent. The Department of Education has their own determination criteria when awarding federal financial aid.
When you complete your FAFSA, you will be asked a series of dependency questions. If you can answer “yes” to one or more of those questions, you are considered an independent student. If you cannot answer “yes” to one or more of the questions, you are considered a dependent student. You can find more information on dependency status at Studentaid.gov.
Verification is the process by which the information you provided on your FAFSA is verified by the Financial Aid Office. If your FAFSA application is selected for verification by the Department of Education, BYU-Idaho is required by federal regulations to obtain additional information from you before your federal financial aid can be awarded. If you have been selected for verification, it does not mean that you did anything wrong on your FAFSA.
We will compare the information on the requested documents with what you provided on your FAFSA and confirm the information is correct at that time. We are then able to finish processing your FAFSA and ensure that you have been awarded correctly.
Approximately 5 business days after you submit your FAFSA, you will need to check your financial aid student portal to see if we are requesting additional documentation. If we are, you have been selected for verification.
Missing document emails will be sent to your BYU-Idaho student email address on a weekly basis until we receive the documents we need to verify your FAFSA. It is important to know that until you submit these documents and they are processed by the Financial Aid Office, you will not be able to receive your federal financial aid.
If you have been selected for verification, you will need to submit the documents listed on your financial aid student portal as soon as possible, preferably by the priority deadline. In some cases it may take several weeks to gather the information we’re requesting. Please apply early and plan accordingly. After your submitted documents have been reviewed, you may receive requests for additional information if further clarification is needed.
If you fail to meet the priority deadline, you risk not having your federal financial aid by the tuition payment deadline and may be assessed a late fee by the Bursar’s office. You will still receive your federal aid award, just later in the semester.
If you fail to meet the federal FAFSA deadlines you risk losing eligibility for federal financial aid for the entire award year.
Direct student loans are fixed-rate loans for undergraduate students attending college who are enrolled in at least six program applicable credits. Students are automatically considered for these loans when they complete the FAFSA. Interest rates are the same for both the Subsidized and Unsubsidized loan types. Students do NOT have to accept any loans offered to them.
Direct Subsidized Loan:
Eligibility for this loan is determined by the information provided when completing the FAFSA. With this loan, the federal government “subsidizes” or pays for, the interest that accrues on this loan while a student is enrolled in at least six program applicable credits each semester. Payments on this loan are also postponed during this time. If a student enrolls in less than six program applicable credits or does not attend for a period of six months or longer, the interest on the loan that accrues during this time will be the student’s responsibility. Repayment on this loan begins when the student is no longer enrolled in at least six program applicable credits, is not enrolled in college for a period of six months or longer, or graduates.
Direct Unsubsidized Loan:
All students who complete a FAFSA are eligible for this loan. The only difference between this loan and a subsidized loan is that the student is responsible for all interest that accrues. To receive this loan a student must be enrolled in at least six program applicable credits each semester. Payments on this loan are postponed during this time. Repayment on this loan begins when the student is no longer enrolled in at least six program applicable credits, is not enrolled in college for a period of six months or longer, or graduates.
Students with Direct Subsidized and/or Unsubsidized loans are not required to start repaying their loan until 6 months after enrolling in less than six program applicable credits credits or 6 months after graduation. This time frame is referred to as a “grace period.” You should know that once your grace period is used, it cannot be reinstated.
A Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) is a federal loan that is available to a parent of a dependent undergraduate student and is based on creditworthiness. The parent, if approved, may borrow an amount up to the student’s annual cost of attendance, minus any financial aid awarded during this same time. Interest to accrue once the first disbursement of the loan is available and repayment begins within 60 days after the entire amount of the loan has fully disbursed. Parents will need to reapply for this loan each year, if needed. You can find more information on the PLUS loan at Studentaid.gov.
Your financial aid award is disbursed within the first full week of the semester if you submitted your FAFSA and all requested documentation by the priority deadline. Occasionally, some awards are disbursed earlier or later than others depending on outside factors.
Once your financial aid is received, the Bursar’s office applies it to your personal account at BYU-Idaho. They will apply your financial aid to your tuition and healthcare charges, if applicable, and any remaining funds will be available for direct deposit by enrolling in eRefund. If you are not enrolled in eRefund, a check will be mailed to your address on file in approximately 10 business days.
You can see where your financial aid funds have been applied to your different charges by clicking on the “show history” link next to the type of aid you’ve received. Amounts showing in red are funds you still owe to the university, while amounts listed in green are available to you.
The BYU-Idaho Scholarship application is available October through April 15th every year. We make a huge effort to ensure that all our students are aware of the April 15th deadline. There are banners on our website, links in their student portal, posts on our social media platforms, signs and billboards around campus, etc. Students are responsible for knowing the deadline and submitting their application within that period. However, we understand there are circumstances that make it difficult for students to submit their scholarship applications. Exceptions may include:
- Late admission to BYU-Idaho
In both of these cases, the application will remain open for them until the third week of their first semester, no matter if it is after the April 15th deadline. If your students has have other extenuating circumstances, they may explain their situation to our scholarship specialists via email at email@example.com. Please note that this is not a guarantee for late submission.