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.

An eligibility index that college financial aid staff use to determine how much financial aid you would receive if you were to attend their school. The EFC is calculated according to a formula specified in law and is based upon the information provided by the student and their family on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

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.

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.

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.

The estimated total cost of attending an institution for one academic year. This amount may include the following:

  • Estimated charges for one academic year of tuition and fees
    • Tuition – Charges assessed for classes and/or other coursework
    • Fees – Charges assessed for other college services (e.g. technology access, recreational center use)
  • Housing – Includes residence hall charges for on-campus students or an estimate of rent and utilities for an off-campus student
  • Food – Includes the cost of a meal plan and/or an estimate of the costs of food prepared at home
  • Estimated transportation and parking costs
  • Estimated costs for books and supplies
  • Purchase or rental of a computer
  • Miscellaneous costs such as personal hygiene, laundry, and reasonable entertainment
  • Other costs specific to certain student circumstances related to attendance, such as dependent care during periods of class attendance or study, expenses related to disabilities, study abroad, educational loan fees, and others
  • Student health insurance costs

 Charges included in the Cost of Attendance that the student/family pays directly to the college.

Estimated expenses in the Cost of Attendance that are not paid directly to the institution.

The student’s Cost of Attendance minus their Expected Family Contribution.

Amount of direct and indirect costs remaining after all Gift Aid is applied. Net price can be covered through a variety of sources, including: savings, income, and education loans.

A form of financial aid that must be repaid. Educational loans have varying fees, interest rates, repayment terms, and/or borrower protections.

Academic workload (or course load), as defined by the institution, in which a student is enrolled for a defined academic period. This normally relates to the number of credit hours or clock hours taken by a student during a given academic period (e.g. full-time, three-quarter-time, half-time, less-than-half-time).

Level of the degree-granting program in which a student is enrolled. Program levels may include: undergraduate (students seeking an associate degree, an undergraduate certificate, or a baccalaureate degree); post-baccalaureate (such as teacher certification); or graduate (students working on a master’s degree, graduate certificate, doctorate, or professional degree). The amounts and types of financial aid for which a student is eligible is determined, in part, by their program level.

Funds awarded to the student that do not have to be repaid, unless the student fails to meet certain criteria, such as a service requirement that is specified as a condition of the gift aid or not completing the period for which the aid was awarded. Gift aid can include awards with titles such as grants, scholarships, remissions, awards, waivers, etc. Gift aid can be awarded based upon many factors, including (but not limited to) financial need, academic excellence, athletic, musical, and/or theatrical talent, affiliation with various groups, and/or career aspirations.

Gift Aid that is typically based on financial need.

Gift Aid that is typically based on merit, such as, academic excellence, talent, affiliation with various groups, or career aspirations or a combination of merit and need.

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

Learn more about Federal Work Study.

An institution’s expectation that a student contribute toward their education using a combination of loans, student employment such as Federal Work-Study, and/or summer savings.

The student’s Cost of Attendance, minus their Expected Family Contribution, less any need-based aid received, such as Gift Aid, Federal Work-Study or Federal Direct Subsidized Loans.

A federally mandated process to confirm the accuracy of data provided by selected applicants on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). To complete the verification process, the student, their parent(s), or spouse, if applicable, are required to provide certain documents to the school for review. If the documentation the student provides the institution doesn’t match what was reported on the FAFSA, verification can result in changes to the student’s financial aid eligibility, and/or financial aid offers.