Helpful Terms

The FAFSA is a form completed by current and prospective college students to determine their eligibility for student financial aid.

Lots of states and colleges also use the FAFSA to determine which students get financial aid—and how much they’ll get.

The FAFSA asks for information about you and your family’s finances, including tax returns, so you’ll need your parents’ help to complete it.

The Student Aid Report (SAR) is a paper or electronic document that gives you some basic information about your eligibility for federal student aid and lists your answers to the questions on your FAFSA.


If you provided a valid e-mail address on your FAFSA, you will receive an e-mail with instructions on how to access an online copy of your SAR. Typically, you will be able to access your SAR within two weeks of filing your FAFSA.


Note: Any student with an FSA ID can view or print his/her SAR by clicking Log In on the FAFSA on the Web home page to log in, then selecting View or Print your Student Aid Report (SAR) from the “My FAFSA” page.

The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is a measure of your family’s financial strength and is calculated according to a formula established by law. Your family’s taxed and untaxed income, assets, and benefits (such as unemployment or Social Security) are all considered in the formula. Your family size and the number of family members who will attend college during the year are also considered.


The information you report on your FAFSA form is used to calculate your EFC.  Campbell University will use the EFC to determine your federal and state student aid eligibility and financial aid award.


Your EFC is not the amount of money your family will have to pay for college nor is it the amount of federal student aid you will receive. It is a number used by your school to calculate the amount of federal student aid you are eligible to receive.

COA is an estimate of  tuition and fees, cost of room and board (or living expenses), cost of books, supplies, transportation, loan fees, and miscellaneous expenses. You can view the COA for your program via the College Financing  Plan located within Student Self-Service.

An offer to the student from the school’s financial aid office. It contains various types of aid to assist in  covering the cost of education. Campbell University award packages are electronic. View your award details via Self-Service.

A type of financial aid that does not have to be repaid.

A type of financial assistance which does not have to be repaid. Funds are provided by a variety of civic organizations, professional groups, etc. and by colleges. Scholarships are based on academic excellence, need, personal skills, family affiliations, athletic ability, etc.

A type of financial assistance that must be repaid. 

Aid paid by federal or institutional funds, for hours worked by student.

Learn more about Federal Work Study.