Applying for Financial Aid at UC Berkeley
You apply for financial aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Complete the FAFSA online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. The FAFSA is available on January 1 each year. UC Berkeley's federal school code is 001312.
Federal Direct Loan Promissory Note: If you did not receive Direct Loan proceeds during the previous academic year at UC Berkeley, you need to complete a Master Promissory Note online at studentloans.gov. Follow the instructions on the website carefully. UC Berkeley cannot apply your loan proceeds to your Campus Accounts Receivables System (CARS) account until we receive electronic notification that you have completed your Master Promissory Note.
First-Time Direct Loan Borrowers at UC Berkeley: You must complete Entrance Counseling before your Direct Loan can be credited to your CARS account. You can complete Entrance Counseling at the studentloans.gov website.
2013-14 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Guide for UC Berkeley Graduate and Professional Students
- Read all the Instructions that accompany the FAFSA form. Be sure to select the 2013-14 form. The online FAFSA allows you to skip some questions based on your answers to earlier questions.
- Types of Aid: The FAFSA is used to determine eligibility for Federal Direct Loans, Federal Work-Study, and Federal Perkins Loans.
- Priority Deadline: Our priority processing deadline is March 2, 2013. If you are an entering student, do not wait until you have been admitted to file your FAFSA! Whether you are an entering or continuing student, filing your FAFSA early allows enough processing time for timely disbursement of funds. If you file after the March 2 deadline, some types of financial aid could be limited. You may still receive Federal Direct Loans, Grad PLUS Loans, or private student loans.
- Last Day to File a FAFSA: The last day to file a FAFSA for 2013-14 is March 15, 2014.
- Title IV School Code: UC Berkeley's federal school code is 001312.
- Dependency and Parent Information: Graduate and professional students are considered independent, and are not required to submit parents' financial information. However, Optometry students who wish to apply for the Health Professions Student Loan (HPSL), need to submit parents' financial information. The parent data will be used only to determine eligibility for HPSL. Parents need to sign and submit the signature page.
- Student Aid Report (SAR): You will receive an electronic SAR from the Department of Education within a week after submitting your FAFSA. Read the SAR carefully for messages regarding your application status. If there are no problems with your application, your data will be submitted electronically to UC Berkeley. After receiving your data from the Department of Education, UC Berkeley will send you an award notification or instructions regarding other documents we may require.
Tips for Completing the FAFSA
- Read the FAFSA instructions carefully. If you have questions contact the Federal Student Aid Information Center at (800) 433-3243 or contact us.
- Do not leave blank any questions that apply to you. If the answer is zero, enter 0.
- Use the same name on the FAFSA as is listed on your Social Security card.
- If you are a citizen or about to become a citizen, do not enter your alien registration number.
- If you have not completed your 2012 tax form at the time you complete the FAFSA, estimate tax figures as accurately as possible.
- Do not mail worksheets, tax forms, or letters to the Department of Education or the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office. The Financial Aid and Scholarships Office will notify you if other documents are needed.
- Make FAFSA corrections online. You will need to use your Personal Identification Number (PIN) to access your information online.
Financial Aid Reminders
- If the UC Berkeley Financial Aid and Scholarships Office requests it, submit additional documentation.
- Review your financial aid offer on MyFinAid (this is not available online until you are officially admitted by the Graduate Division).
- Complete the Direct Loan Master Promissory Note if not completed previously.
- Complete an online Entrance Counseling session if you have not previously borrowed at UC Berkeley.
- Sign up for Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT). While optional, this is strongly recommended.
- Register for classes (you need to be enrolled in at least six units to receive federal financial aid).