FINANCIAL AID

Apply

Follow the basic steps below to apply for financial aid. For more detail, visit the Financial Aid Process section.

Important Financial Aid Updates regarding the 2017-18 FAFSA and CA Dream Act Application

Important Financial Aid Updates regarding the 2017–18 FAFSA and CA Dream Act Application

What is changing for 2017–18?

  • You will be able to submit your FAFSA/Dream Act Application earlier. You can file your 2017–18 FAFSA/Dream Act Application as early as Oct. 1, 2016, rather than beginning on Jan. 1, 2017. The earlier submission date will be a permanent change, enabling you to complete and submit a FAFSA/Dream Act as early as October 1 every year.
  • You will use earlier income and tax information. Beginning with the 2017–18 FAFSA/Dream Act Application, students will be required to report income and tax information from an earlier tax year. For example, on the 2017–18 FAFSA/Dream Act Application, you—and your parent(s), as appropriate—will report your 2015 income and tax information, rather than your 2016 income and tax information. This will allow most students to take advantage of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, making the processing of your aid application faster with less additional paperwork.

How will the changes benefit me?

We expect that you will benefit in these ways:

  • Because the FAFSA/Dream Act Application will ask for older income and tax information, you will already have done your taxes by the time you fill out your FAFSA/Dream Act Application, and you won’t need to estimate your tax information and then go back into the FAFSA/Dream Act Application later to update it.
  • For FAFSA filers only: because you will already have done your taxes by the time you fill out your FAFSA, you should be able to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (IRS DRT) to automatically import your tax information into your FAFSA. (Learn about the IRS DRT at StudentAid.gov/irsdrt.)
  • Because the FAFSA/ Dream Act Application is available earlier, you may feel less pressure due to having more time to explore and understand our financial aid options and apply for aid before the March 2nd priority deadline.

Where can I get more information about—and help with—the FAFSA/Dream Act Application?

  • For the FAFSA, visit StudentAid.gov/fafsa
  • For the Dream Act Application, visit dream.csac.ca.gov
  • The Financial Aid office will offer workshops to help students complete their 2017-18 FAFSA/Dream Act Application during the fall 2016 and spring 2017 semesters. Please check the Financial Aid Web Page periodically starting in mid-September for information regarding the dates, times, and location of the workshops.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Steps to completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

1. Request an FSA ID (If you already have an FSA ID, go to step 2)

What is an FSA ID?
Students, parents, and borrowers are required to use an FSA ID, made up of a username and password, to access certain U.S. Department of Education websites. Your FSA ID is used to confirm your identity when accessing your financial aid information and electronically signing your federal student aid documents.

Where do I use my FSA ID?
You will use your FSA ID for the FAFSA, whether you are applying for the first time, renewing your application or making a correction to a form you already submitted. You can also use your FSA ID as an online signature for your Master Promissory Note and to access the National Student Loan Database System, Direct Consolidation Loans, Direct Loan Program and Direct Loan Servicing.

How do I create my FSA ID?
To view a short video on how to create your FSA ID click here.  When you are ready to create your FSA ID, go to https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa/filling-out/fsaid.

2. Complete and submit your FAFSA

Go to https://fafsa.ed.gov/ and complete the FAFSA online. Submitting an application online is convenient since the application saves your information for the following year. If you need help filling out the form, check out the video tutorial, "7 Easy Steps to the FAFSA".

The preferred (and fastest) method of reporting your (and your parent’s if applicable) federal income tax information on the FAFSA is to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.  The IRS Data Retrieval Tool allows students and parents to access the IRS tax return information needed to complete the FAFSA, and transfer the data directly into their FAFSA from the IRS Web site.

To see some commonly asked questions about transferring financial information from the IRS using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool click here and review the “Browse FAQs” on the left side of the page.

Some information to keep in mind:

  • File your federal tax return as early as possible.
  • If you fill out your FAFSA before filing your tax return, you can use estimated information and log on later to update your application. Once your tax return has been processed, use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to accurately update your FAFSA. Be sure to submit the FAFSA by March 2; do not miss the deadline to wait for final information on a filed tax return.
  • Students who choose not to use or are unable to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool may be required to submit copies of their, their spouses’ or their parents’ federal income transcript. You will be notified via email if you are selected for verification during the academic school year and will be asked to submit tax transcripts.
  • If you use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, do not make any changes to your (or your parent’s) income information on the FAFSA. Doing so will cause your application to be flagged for verification and you will be asked to submit additional documentation.

3. Check your status

If you filed electronically, check your FAFSA application online three to five days after submission. If you mailed your form, wait 7 to 10 days to check the status of your application.
After FAFSA validates your information, CSUN will electronically receive your financial aid application. You may then check your financial aid status on the myNorthridge Portal.

4. Financial Aid Process

Approximately 30 percent of financial aid applicants are selected for a process that requires the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department to verify information submitted on the FAFSA. The verification process must be completed before aid is awarded. It is your responsibility to check your CSUN email regularly and determine if you have been selected for verification. For additional information on the Financial Aid process go to this website: http://www.csun.edu/financialaid/financial-aid-process.

California Dream Act Application

California Dream Act

The California Dream Act of 2011 became law through the passage of Assembly Bills 130 and 131. AB 130 and AB 131 allow AB 540 students to apply for state and institutional grants, and privately funded scholarships.

How to Apply

To apply for the state grant programs available under AB 131, you need to complete the California Dream Act application. The application will collect basic personal and income information to determine eligibility for funding. To be eligible for priority consideration, the application should be completed every year between Jan. 1 and March 2.

Students who received a Social Security number and qualify for AB 540, including those who qualify through the Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals (DACA), should complete the California Dream Act application in order to be considered for state financial aid, since those students are not eligible for federal student aid.

Check your status

After the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) validates your information, CSUN will electronically receive your application. You may check your financial aid status on the myNorthridge Portal or by calling 1-(818)-677-4085 to speak with a financial aid representative. Please note that CSUN will not begin processing aid applications until mid-April.

Additional information

You may be asked to send in additional information before you can be awarded. Check your CSUN Gmail, and view your To-Do List on the myNorthridge Portal. Submit all required documentation promptly.

Award notices

The Financial Aid & Scholarship Department will begin awarding new freshmen and transfer students in late April for the upcoming academic year. Continuing students will be awarded in late June. Award notices are sent to your CSUN email address, and awards are visible on the myNorthridge Portal.

Summer Aid

SUMMER 2016

All information about summer 2016 is subject to change. We strongly encourage you to check back often for potential changes to the financial aid summer process.

Summer Courses through The Tseng College of Extended Learning
The majority of summer courses are offered through The Tseng College.  For information about the Tseng College summer tuition fees and payments, visit The Tseng College website.

Special Year-Round Cohort Programs offered through the regular university
Students in the programs below enroll for summer courses through the regular university:

  • Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (A-BSN)
  • Master of Social Work (MSW)
  • Doctoral Program in Education Leadership (Ed.D.)
  • Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy (D.P.T.)

For summer tuition fee information and payment deadlines for special year-round cohort programs, visit University Cash Services.

Is summer aid available?
Yes.  Limited financial aid is available for the summer term to students who qualify.  Summer financial aid may include the following:

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Campus Summer Grant (available only for students enrolling through The Tseng College)
  • State University Grant (available only for students enrolling in MSW through regular university)
  • Doctoral Grants (available only for students enrolling in Doctoral programs through regular university)
  • Federal Direct Loans
  • Federal Direct PLUS loans
  • Private Education Loans

Registering simultaneously for all classes in one or more summer sessions will expedite your financial aid request. Your summer aid eligibility is based on total enrollment units in all summer sessions.

Note: Students who filed the DREAM Act Application are ineligible for the Federal Pell Grant and Federal Student loans and will be considered only for the Campus Summer Grant/State University Grant based on eligibility criteria and fund availability.

How do I apply for summer aid?
Students enrolling for summer through The Tseng College:

  • Enroll in summer courses and pay your summer registration fees on your own at the time of enrollment. Financial aid awards will not be available when you enroll. If you are later found eligible for aid, you will be awarded. However, you should also be financially prepared for the possibility that we may run out of funds or that you may not have remaining eligibility for the summer term.
  • Have a 2015-2016 financial aid application on file with the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department. If you already completed a 2015-2016 FAFSA or CA Dream application, you do not need to submit another one for summer aid.
  • Submit all required documents as listed in your To-Do List. Log on to the myNorthridge Portal, and navigate to the SOLAR Student Center. The To-Do List is located on the right side of the page.
  • Meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
  • To be considered for the Campus Summer Grant you must be enrolled half-time. Grant-eligible students will be identified and awarded based on earliest enrollment date until funds are exhausted. No further action is required by the student. (Note: You must maintain half-time eligibility in order to keep the Campus Summer Grant. If you drop below half-time status, we will cancel the grant.)

Special Year-Round Cohort Students enrolling for summer through the regular university (MSW, Doctoral, A-BSN):

  • Enroll in summer courses through the regular university and pay summer registration fees according to the summer fee payment deadlines.  Financial aid awards will not be available when you enroll. If you are later found eligible for aid, you will be awarded. However, you should also be financially prepared for the possibility that we may run out of funds or that you may not have remaining eligibility for the summer term. For summer tuition fee payment and deadlines for special year-round cohort programs, visit University Cash Services.
  • Have a 2015-2016 financial aid application on file with the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department. If you already completed a 2015-2016 FAFSA or CA Dream application, you do not need to submit another one for summer aid.
  • Submit all required documents as listed in your To-Do List. Log on to the myNorthridge Portal, and navigate to the SOLAR Student Center. The To-Do List is located on the right side of the page.
  • Meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
  • To be considered for the State University Grant/Doctoral Grant, you must be enrolled half-time. Grant eligible students will be identified and awarded once enrollment is established. No further action is required by the student. A-BSN students are ineligible for these grants.

How much aid am I eligible for?
Your eligibility for summer aid depends on many factors, including enrollment, need, class level and whether you have exhausted your eligibility for federal grants and loans during the regular 2015-2016 academic year. If you are unsure about your exact circumstances, you can always check with the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department. However, if you contact us, we will not be able to process your summer aid eligibility on request.

How is summer Federal Pell Grant eligibility determined?
If you were enrolled less than full time for either fall 2015 or spring 2016, you may have remaining Federal Pell Grant funds for summer. The Financial Aid & Scholarship Department will identify and award eligible students once summer enrollment is established. 

Only undergraduates and students pursuing a first teaching credential may be considered for Federal Pell Grant eligibility. Credential students must be enrolled at least half-time in units required for credential completion. Graduate master's, second B.A. and doctoral students are ineligible for Federal Pell Grant funding.

How is Campus Summer Grant eligibility determined?
If you received a State University Grant or a Cal Grant award for the 2015-2016 academic year, you may be eligible for a Campus Summer Grant. These funds are limited and may be exhausted before we can award all eligible students. Eligible students will be identified and awarded based on earliest enrollment date and based on fund availability.

You must enroll at least half-time to be considered for the Campus Summer Grant. If you are awarded the grant, you must maintain at least half-time enrollment during the summer to maintain your eligibility. Your grant will be canceled if you reduce your enrollment after you are awarded.

How is Summer State University Grant/Doctoral Grant eligibility determined?
If you received a State University Grant or Doctoral Grant during either the fall 2015 or spring 2016 term(s) and you are a student in the MSW or Doctoral program enrolling for summer through regular university, you may be considered for the summer State University Grant/Doctoral Grant.  These funds are limited and may be exhausted before we can award all eligible students. Eligible students will be identified and awarded based on earliest enrollment date and based on fund availability.

You must enroll at least half-time to be considered for summer State University Grant and Doctoral Grant. If you are awarded the grant, you must maintain at least half-time enrollment during the summer to maintain your eligibility. Your grant will be canceled if you reduce your enrollment after you are awarded.

How do I request a summer loan?
To be considered for a summer Federal Direct Loan, you must be enrolled at least half-time; meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements; and submit the required loan request forms by the published deadlines. For information about Federal Direct loans and annual eligibility amounts, go to the Loans | Federal Student Aid

Summer Loan Request forms will be available on the website on April 4. Do not submit the summer loan request form until you are enrolled at least half-time. 

  • Federal Direct loan: To request a loan, you must submit a Summer 2016 Federal Direct Loan Request form only if you have not already borrowed the annual maximum eligibility amount in Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans for the 2015-2016 award year.
  • Private Education Loans: To request a private education loan, you must be a matriculated CSUN student in a degree-granting program. Visit the Private Education Loans page for additional information.
  • Federal Direct PLUS:
    • To request a summer 2016 Parent PLUS loan, you must be a parent of a dependent undergraduate or credential student and submit the Summer 2016 Parent PLUS Request form.
    • To request a summer 2016 GRAD PLUS loan, you must be a graduate or doctoral student and submit the Summer 2016 GRAD PLUS Request form.

Summer loan request deadlines:

  • Summer Session 1 and Session 3 students- submit a loan request by July 29, 2016
  • Summer Session 2 students (if you are only attending this session) - submit a loan request by June 17, 2016

When will I be awarded summer aid?
Summer awarding begins in late-April and continues on a rolling basis throughout the entire summer term. Your aid eligibility will be determined after you enroll and pay your summer tuition fees. You will be notified of your summer aid eligibility via your CSUN email account.

When will my summer aid pay out?
Summer aid will pay out and be applied to your CSUN student account starting the week of May 31, 2016 and weekly thereafter if you meet the following conditions:

  • You have been awarded
  • Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements
  • No outstanding document requests with the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department
  • Enrolled in sufficient units

If you are only enrolled in Summer Session III, your aid will disburse the week of July 13. Summer aid will go towards any outstanding summer charges first; anything in excess of charges will be processed as an eRefund or mailed as a paper check.

What if I withdraw from all or part of my summer sessions?
Students who drop below half-time enrollment status during any of the summer 2016 sessions may have their financial aid award reduced or canceled. If you withdraw from all courses in session one or two, but retain enrollment for session three, please submit written confirmation of your intent to attend session three courses. Failure to submit written confirmation may result in a reduction or cancellation of financial aid. Any reduction or cancellation of financial aid may result in a balance due to CSUN and a possible hold on future enrollment.

Can I receive summer financial aid at more than one school?
Students who enroll at two or more schools during summer 2016 are only eligible to receive financial aid at one institution for that term. Students who receive federal financial aid at two or more schools for overlapping enrollment periods (i.e., regular semesters and summer sessions) may be subject to reduction of financial aid at one or all schools. Any reduction of financial aid may result in a balance due to CSUN and a possible hold on future enrollment. Board of Governors Fee Waiver (BOG) does not impact federal aid at CSUN.