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Apply For Federal Aid

Everything begins with the FAFSA — the Free Application for Federal Student Aid

You will get used to talking about the FAFSA, because you file one for every academic year. With one application, you are applying for several different types of federal aid.

Set up a FSA ID

A FSA ID is needed to submit your FAFSA, access federal websites and sign your loan promissory note. It also serves as your legal signature and is tied to your Social Security number. If you’re a dependent student, at least one parent needs a FSA ID in order to sign the FAFSA and apply for a parent PLUS loan. You’ll only create your FSA ID once, but will use it often as a student.

Applying Online

The online FAFSA application takes less than an hour if you have all your documents. The FAFSA is necessary to be considered for grants, loans, work-study, and some need-based scholarships. Keep in mind that there are typically two FAFSA applications open at one time. Please be sure to fill out the right one for the academic year you are applying for. Our academic year runs from fall to summer.

We highly recommend using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to import your tax information directly into the FAFSA.

*Don’t forget to pay close attention to important dates and deadlines.

Important Changes to the 2024-25 FAFSA

The 2024-25 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is being simplified due to legislation and the university’s financial aid and scholarships teams would like to remind the campus community of these important changes. Please refer to for more information regarding the upcoming changes.

  • For 2024-25, the FAFSA is currently slated to open by December 31. In future years it will return to being available October 1. Boise State will not receive 2024-25 FAFSA data from Federal Student Aid until late January 2024. At this time, Boise State is not expecting to change the February 15 priority deadline. Updates will be provided when more information is available.
  • Students will no longer be able to complete the FAFSA on behalf of their parent(s) or spouse. Students will invite “contributors” by email and parents or spouses will provide their own information via that invitation.
  • Parents or spouses without Social Security Numbers will be able to create an FSA ID to electronically sign the FAFSA. This new process will confirm identity through the credit bureau – TransUnion. If a parent or spouse doesn’t sign the FAFSA electronically, the signature page must be mailed directly to Federal Student Aid. Schools will no longer be able to process paper signature pages directly.
  • FAFSA simplification results in fewer questions for students to answer on the application and a simplified calculation that will increase the number of Pell eligible students. We strongly encourage all students to apply, especially if you previously filed a FAFSA but are considering not filing again because you didn’t initially qualify for any grants.
  • The application is updating the language from Expected Family Contribution (EFC) to Student Aid Index (SAI). Students with the highest need may see a negative number for their SAI.
  • The FAFSA will provide the option for students to indicate they have unusual circumstances and request additional guidance from the financial aid office.
  • The FAFSA will no longer ask students about their housing plans for the academic year; however, Boise State will collect this information separately to ensure students are provided an accurate financial aid offer.
  • The FAFSA will no longer exclude the reporting of assets for small businesses and family farms (on which the family lives). Boise State will be monitoring the impact of this change on students.

What You Can Do Now