FAFSA & TASFA Information & Resources
What is financial aid?
Financial aid is money supplied by a source other than the family to assist with the cost of attending college. Financial aid comes in the form of grants, scholarships, loans and work-study programs. All students should apply for aid regardless of family income status.
Completing the FAFSA is a Graduation Requirement
In accordance with Texas Education Code (TEC), §28.0256, each student enrolled in 12th grade must do one of the following in order to graduate:
- Complete and submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA);
- Complete and submit a Texas Application for State Financial Aid (TASFA); or
- Submit a signed opt-out form. (Download the opt out form in English or Spanish.)
More information on this new requirement can be found on the Texas Education Agency website.
A student's residency status determines which financial aid application (FAFSA or TASFA) should be used.
FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)
Students can apply for federal financial aid by completing and submitting the FAFSA. The U.S. Department of Education uses FAFSA information to determine a student's eligibility for need-based federal aid, including Federal Pell Grants, Federal Student Loans, and Federal Work-Study. This information is then forwarded to institutions of higher education who calculate financial aid awards for each admitted student.
Federal financial aid is available to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and certain eligible non-citizens. For example, students who have a T visa or a parent with a T-1 visa are eligible to receive federal financial aid.
Students will need a FAFSA on file to qualify for most state and institutional aid, including grants and scholarships.
FAFSA Application Available: October 1
Texas State Priority Completion Deadline: January 15
Federal Completion Deadline: June 30
TASFA (Texas Application for State Financial Aid)
Students who are not eligible for Federal Aid, but are residents of Texas are eligible for state aid and may submit a TASFA. Students do not fill out both a FAFSA and a TASFA for the same school.
To be considered a Texas resident and to qualfiy for state aid, students must meet these four provisions:
- Graduate from a public or private high school, or receive a high school equivalency, in Texas.
- Reside in Texas for a least three years (36 months) leading up to high school graduation or receiving a GED.
- Reside in Texas for 12 consecutive months right before the semester the student enrolls in college.
- Provide the institution a notorized affidavit stating that the student will submit an application to become a US permanent resident as soon as they are eligible to do so.
Currently, there is not an electronic TASFA application. Students submitting a TASFA application will need to submit a paper application to each college they apply.
TASFA Application Available: October 1
Priority Completion Deadline: January 15
Completion Deadline: June 30