How Eligibility for Financial Aid is Determined

Determining Eligibility

To be considered for federal student aid, you must complete a FAFSA. The FAFSA collects financial and other information used to calculate your expected family contribution (EFC). Your EFC is calculated according to a formula established by federal law. The federal formula takes various factors into account including:

  • Student and/or Parent income
  • Family size
  • Assets (Student/Parents)
  • Number of family members in college, not including parents if you are a dependent student

Your EFC will appear on your Student Aid Report (SAR) once your FAFSA has been processed by the Central Processor.

To determine your financial need and the different types of financial aid that you may be eligible for we use the following formula:

Cost of Attendance - Expected Family Contribution (EFC) = Financial Need

The Office of Financial Aid will put together a financial aid package that comes as close as possible to meeting your need. One of the key factors, in addition to need, that determines the amount of aid that a student can receive in an academic year is availability of funds. As a result, the total dollars awarded to you may fall short of the amount for which you are eligible. Charter Oak, like most schools, will not be able to meet full need as demonstrated by many aid applicants without self-help aid (i.e., student loans). Therefore, it is very important to meet our application priority date to receive the maximum amount of grant aid available.

Financial aid applications are processed on a rolling basis and in the order in which they become complete. We recommend that students log into their ACORN account to access timely information regarding financial aid, including deadlines, disbursement schedules, forms and policies.

*Please note that financial aid does not cover the admissions application fee, admissions deposit, late fees, non-credit courses, CLEP/Dantes testing, transcript fees, graduation fee, portfolio assessment fees or certificate program costs.

At this time, undocumented students do not qualify for state or federal financial aid.   Under a new state law, undocumented students may be eligible to receive institutional financial aid.