FAFSA for Graduate School: Tips for Getting Financial Aid

 

                FAFSA for Graduate School: Tips for Getting Financial Aid Earn another degree, grow in your job, and increase your income by doing so. That sounds fantastic, doesn’t it? Individuals with a master’s degree or higher earned a median wage of $70,000, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), whereas those with a bachelor’s degree earned only $55,700, a 26 percent difference.

The only drawback is that graduate school can be prohibitively expensive for some students. However, you may be eligible for financial assistance to help offset the costs of your education. Filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required in order to be considered for those opportunities (FAFSA). Nevertheless, the FAFSA for graduate school operates in a somewhat different manner from the application you submitted for your undergraduate degree. Here’s what you need to know in order to make the most of your financial assistance opportunities while in graduate school.

 

Can You Complete the FAFSA for Graduate School?

As a result of the increased earning potential that comes with a master’s degree, more and more people are considering attending graduate school. According to the Council of Graduate Schools, the number of people applying to graduate schools climbed by 7.3 percent in 2020 compared to last year.

Despite the fact that graduate education can be a worthy investment, you should be prepared for some sticker shock when you realize how expensive it can be. Graduate school tuition and fees, on average, cost $19,314 per year for full-time students. Because this figure does not include accommodation and board or other fees such as transportation, your total cost of attendance could be much more than the stated amount.

What method will you use to cover the costs? The assumption that graduate students are ineligible for financial help is incorrect; in fact, they are eligible for financial assistance. In reality, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, 58 percent of graduate students got some type of financial assistance. You must complete the FAFSA in order to be considered for this assistance.

 

5 Types of Financial Aid Available for Graduate School

As a result of the increased earning potential that comes with a master’s degree, more and more people are considering attending graduate school. According to the Council of Graduate Schools, the number of people applying to graduate schools climbed by 7.3 percent in 2020 compared to last year.
Graduate students may be eligible for financial aid, which can take the form of grants, scholarships and fellowships, as well as work-study and student loan programs and other forms of assistance. Here are a few options for funding graduate education:

 

Grants are the first step.

Because of the higher earning potential associated with a master’s degree, more people are opting for graduate education. According to the Council of Graduate Schools, the number of people applying to graduate schools increased by 7.3 percent in 2020.
As a graduate student, you may be eligible for grants, scholarships, fellowships, work-study programs, and student loans. Here are a few ways to pay for your graduate studies:

 

2. Financial aid

Graduate school scholarships are a type of gift help. Scholarships are typically awarded on the basis of merit rather than financial need, but certain organizations will evaluate your application based on your financial circumstances as reported on the FAFSA.

Fellowships are the third option.

Fellowships, like scholarships, are awarded on the basis of merit rather than financial need. They’re usually one-time prizes that give you a stipend to continue your studies or conduct more research. Fellowships are often awarded based on your potential, whereas scholarships are awarded based on your previous achievements.

Work-Study Programs are a fourth option.

If you fill out the FAFSA for graduate school, you might be eligible for a work-study program. If your school participates in the federal work-study program, you’ll find a part-time job in your field of study and utilize the money earned to defray some of your costs. The amount of hours you can work is determined by your course load as well as your financial situation.

Student Loans No. 5

44 percent of graduate students take out student loans to pay for their studies. You may be qualified for federal student loans if you complete the FAFSA for graduate school, or you may need to apply for private student loans. Students in graduate school may be eligible for the following forms of loans:

Graduate students can borrow up to $20,500 per year in Direct Unsubsidized Loans from the federal government. The total amount you can borrow is limited to $138,500, which includes any loans you may have taken out during your undergraduate studies.
Unlike Unsubsidized Loans, Federal Grad PLUS Loans have no borrowing limits; you can borrow up to the complete cost of attendance. The interest rate and origination fee are higher than those offered by Federal Direct Unsubsidized loans.
Private graduate student loans: If you require additional funds to pay for school, private graduate student loans can help. You can normally borrow up to the complete cost of attendance with private student loans. If you have good credit or a co-signer, you might be able to get a loan with lower interest rates or a longer repayment period than Federal Grad PLUS loans.
How to Apply for Graduate School Using the FAFSA

If you’re getting ready to fill out the FAFSA, keep in mind that the graduate school application is quite similar to the undergraduate program application. The most significant distinction is your dependency status; whereas most undergraduate students are deemed dependent for financial aid purposes, graduate students are considered independent. That implies you won’t have to provide financial details about your parents. Instead, simply share the following information about yourself:

Your FSA ID (Federal Student Aid) number
Your Social Security number and information from your tax return
Account balances for your checking and savings accounts, as well as your investment accounts.

In less than an hour, you may finish the FAFSA online.

TIP: You can file your FAFSA as early as October 1 of the year before you start your program. Some federal help is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis, so get your FAFSA in as soon as possible!

FAFSA and Grad School: Frequently Asked Questions 1. Can the FAFSA cover the entire cost of graduate school?

The information you supply on the FAFSA will be used by the college or university to establish your financial aid package. The amount of assistance you receive is determined by your household income, assets, and family size.

It’s possible to receive enough financial help to cover the entire cost of attendance, but you’ll almost certainly have to pay a portion of it.

2. Are graduate students eligible for further financial aid?

Graduate students, on average, do not receive as many grants and scholarships as undergraduate students. Graduate students can apply for Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loans (up to $20,500) once a year until their lifetime aggregate limit is reached. They can also borrow up to the cost of attendance, minus any other financial help they have, through the Federal Grad PLUS program or private student loans, up to the cost of attendance, minus any other financial aid they have.

3. Is there any financial assistance for graduate school?

As a graduate student, you can apply for a variety of financial aid options, including:

Grants\sScholarships
Fellowships
Programs for Work-Study
Student Loans from the Federal Government

If your financial aid package is insufficient to cover your educational expenses, graduate students may consider taking out private student loans to cover the remaining fees.

Investing in Graduate School

Filling out the FAFSA for graduate school is an important first step in determining what financial aid options are available. You may be qualified for gift aid, work-study programs, or federal student loans, depending on your circumstances.

Check out College Ave’s graduate loans if you need to borrow money for graduate education. You can pick between fixed and variable interest rates, and you can return your loan over a period of up to 15 years. You may see what rates you qualify for without hurting your credit score by using our student loan calculator to see what your monthly payments would look like.

 

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