Six Steps to Financial Aid at USF
As you go through these steps, do not hesitate to contact our office if you have any questions or are unclear about any part of the financial aid process at the University of Sioux Falls.
- Apply for admission
You must be accepted for admission before financial aid offers can be made. It is recommended that you apply for admission in the fall or early winter.
- Complete scholarship applications
The University of Sioux Falls offers numerous scholarship opportunities. Some have deadlines and require additional forms. You do not need to complete the FAFSA prior to completing a scholarship application. Photocopy any scholarship applications for your records before they are mailed.
- Apply for Department of Education FSA ID
You and at least one parent should apply for a FSA ID before completing the FAFSA. The FSA ID will serve as your electronic signature when filing the FAFSA online, as well as making corrections to your FAFSA online. It also allows you to e-sign a Master Promissory Note (eMPN).
- File Your FAFSA
Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon as possible after January 1, 2015 and include the USF school code (003469).
USF has a priority filing date of March 1 for the FAFSA.
The FAFSA allows you to be considered for aid from Federal Financial Aid Programs. After filing the FAFSA, you will receive a report called a Student Aid Report (SAR) via email. If there are extraordinary circumstances in your family's situation that you feel are not reflected on the FAFSA, you should provide documentation, including a written statement, explaining those circumstances to the Director of Financial Aid. Special Circumstances are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
- Respond to requests for additional information
The University of Sioux Falls may request additional information in order to verify the information on your FAFSA. Verification is the process a school follows to check the accuracy of the information reported by a student on the FAFSA. This is done by collecting documents used to complete the FAFSA and comparing them with the answers the student provided on the FAFSA. If your application is selected for verification, you must complete the verification process before your eligibility for need-based financial aid can be determined and awarded to you. If verification is required, you will receive a notification via mail from the Financial Aid Office outlining exactly what documents must be submitted. The following are the FAFSA verification documents that must be provided:
- Family size (as defined on the FAFSA)
- Number of college students (at least half-time and pursuing a degree) in your household
- Funds paid for child support and documentation of amount received in food stamps
IRS Tax Transcript or use of IRS Data Retrieval Tool which verifies:
- Adjusted gross income
- Taxes paid
- Tax-exempt interest
- Untaxed IRA/Keogh distributions/deductions
- Untaxed pensions and annuities
- Education tax credits
*IRS Data Retrieval Tool is available on the www.fafsa.ed.gov website under the financial information tab.
- Investigate sources for other scholarships
- Contact your high school guidance counselor.
- Ask parents' employers or organizations to which your parents belong about scholarship possibilities.
- Check with community organizations.
- Do research at the library.
- Check out national scholarship opportunities online.