Financial Aid How Aid Works

Introduction to Financial Aid

How Aid Works

We hope these basic facts will provide a good primer for all undergraduate applicants.

How Financial Aid Works

Around two thirds of undergraduate college students in the U.S. receive some form of need-based financial aid, either from the government, from their college, or from a combination of both. Need-based financial aid eligibility is based on two calculations; the total cost of education and (you or) your family's ability to pay. The cost of education is different at each college or university. Each school determines the costs of attendance (tuition, fees, housing, food and living expenses) for completing their programs. On the website of every school there is an online tool, the Net Price Calculator, that helps families get an idea of how much financial aid they can expect to receive.

Who May Apply for Financial Aid?

At Dartmouth, all students are eligible to apply for financial aid: prospective first year students, undocumented students, transfer students, international students, and current students whose circumstances have changed.

Why and When Do I Apply?

If you are not certain how you will pay for college, you should apply for financial aid and learn about the help available. Prospective students should apply for admission and financial aid at the same time. You will reapply annually.

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Financial Aid