How to Apply for Student Financial Aid
Kennesaw State students use the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to apply for financial aid. Your FAFSA application for the upcoming school year should be completed by March 1.
- The FAFSA is used for state and federal aid programs.
- Be sure to list KSU’s school code on your FAFSA, 001577.
- KSU's Priority Deadline for FAFSA completion is March 1.
- You must file a FAFSA each year to be considered for financial aid. For more information, view the FAFSA Overview and How to Fill Out the FAFSA videos provided by US Department of Education office of Federal Student Aid.
- Use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to transfer your tax information to your FAFSA. If you didn't use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool initially, you can go back and use the tool to update your info..
- If you only want to apply for the HOPE or Zell Miller Scholarship Program, you can complete the GSFAPPS application.
- KSU's Priority Deadline for GSFAPPS completion is March 1.
Once your application has been received, the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid may ask you for additional documents.
Check your KSU e-mail account often, and make sure you submit any additional documents as quickly as possible.
Verification is a process mandated by the U.S. Department of Education to confirm the accuracy of the information provided on the FAFSA. Students who are selected for verification will be required to provide certain documents to the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid before their financial aid application can be processed. Examples of some documents that may be requested include:
- Income Tax Transcript ordered from the Internal Revenue Service
- Dependent/Independent Verification Web Form
Other documents may be requested as needed in order to process your financial aid application. To determine if you need to submit additional documents to the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid, please log in to Owl Express, select the Financial Aid tab and then click on the View Requirements and Submit Documents link. In addition, the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid will send you email notifications. Check your KSU e-mail account often, and make sure you submit documents as quickly as possible.
Requesting a re-evaluation of your aid eligibility
Families facing severe financial problems due to job loss, medical expenses, foreclosure or business decline can request a review of their aid eligibility. This is called a Family Contribution Appeal and the form to request a review is located on Owl Express.
Circumstances that will be considered include:
- Loss of income because of recent unemployment
- High unreimbursed medical and/or dental expenses
- Separation or divorce
- Death of a parent or spouse
- Cost of attendance
Use of Professional Judgment: Evaluation of financial aid applications are handled through a review process using professional judgment by financial aid professionals in the KSU Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid. Any request to our office is considered using best professional practices and making such a request does not guarantee approval. Financial aid regulations are subject to change through legislation or policy changes by the U.S. Department of Education.
Timing of requests: All requests will be reviewed as they are received. You should allow a minimum of three weeks for your request to be reviewed.
All requests for a Professional Judgment must be processed by July 31st for the current academic year, for example, for the 2019-2020 academic year requests must be processed by July 31, 2020. Requests received after the July 31st date will not be considered.
The law governing Federal Student Aid (Title IV) categorizes students as "dependent" or "independent" based on the premise the student and parents have the primary responsibility for meeting the student's educational costs. This premise applies even when the parents are not actually supporting the student.
The institution's financial aid administrator is given the statutory authority to exercise "professional judgment" and declare a dependent student independent if he or she determines this action would be reasonable in light of documented unusual or unique circumstances.
NOTE: Parents refusal to contribute financially or unwillingness to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or the student not being claimed on the parent(s)' Federal Tax Return, or the student showing self-sufficiency are not reasons to declare a student independent for Federal Student Financial Aid.
However, some unusual circumstances which qualify as reasons to declare a student independent may include, but are not limited to: parental abandonment of the student, leaving an abusive family environment which threatens the student's physical/emotional health or safety, or a student's inability to locate parents for a long-term and on-going basis.
Students may complete the Dependency Override process on Owl Express.
All requests for a Dependency Override must be processed by July 31st for the current academic year, for example, for the 2019-2020 academic year, requests must be processed by July 31, 2020. Requests received after the July 31st date will not be considered.