What are the Types of Financial Aid?
"Financial aid" is a term that covers a wide variety of programs that help students and families pay for college or graduate school. The two main criteria used to award financial assistance are financial need and academic merit. Some awards must be re-paid (loans) while others do not (grants, scholarships).
The three major sources of financial aid are the federal government, state government and educational institutions, although many businesses, labor organizations, foundations, religious organizations, and community organizations also offer financial assistance. The federal government has recognized the need for teachers, particularly in the fields of special education, mathematics, and science, and has created grants for individuals pursuing careers in those subject areas
A gift, often based on achievement rather than need, that is offered by community and professional groups, businesses, foundations, unions, churches and other organizations. Be wary about using for-profit scholarship search services, which charge you a fee for information that is available free. The Federal Government has created a database of scholarships for which you may be eligible.
Financial aid that does not need to be repaid. Grants are often based on need.
- Federal Pell Grants
- Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
- Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG)
- National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grants (National SMART Grant)
- California Student Aid Commission
- Troops to Teachers
Money that must be repaid with interest (unless forgiven in return for a commitment to teach in high-need subjects or areas, such as in California's APLE program). For some loans, the government pays the interest while you attend school.
- Stafford Loans
- Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) and Direct Loan Programs
- Assumption Program of Loans for Education (APLE)
Note: There will be no new APLE loans for 2012-13. Allocations for 2013-14 will be known by July 2013.
- Loan Forgiveness for Public Service Employees
Work-study , scholarships, internships, tuition payment plans, fee waivers, and other subsidies offered by a specific campus.
View a chart of federal and state-funded financial aid programs.