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Financial Aid Basics

The financial aid process is complicated, but we’re here to help define the terms, walk you through the steps and avoid the pitfalls.

“Financial aid” is a broad term that encompasses a variety of options, from gift aid that you don’t have to repay and loans that you do, to employment programs like work-study or assistantships. Review the types of aid and their requirements.

Get started

You’ll automatically be considered for most types of aid when you complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Apply for Aid lists all the steps to complete the application.

Pay close attention to Important Dates — many aid programs operate on a first-come, first-served basis.

Receive my financial aid offer

Once we have all your materials, our team begins the award process and will notify you when we’ve assembled your award offer. You can monitor your awards and your account through the student portal, Campus Connect.

In most cases, your aid will be credited to your account — a process called disbursement — at the start of each term. Learn more about how you’ll receive financial aid funds.

Keep my information safe

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) covers the privacy of student records maintained by institutions such as DePaul. FERPA ensures that you can inspect your own records, correct any misinformation and determine what information, if any, that DePaul may release about you.

Learn more: Watch Financial Aid TV videos