How to Apply
Step 1: Apply for Aid
Applying for federal student aid is quicker and easier than ever. You can complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
FAFSA Tips and Common Mistakes to Avoid
Follow these easy steps to simplify the process of applying for federal student aid.
- Gather Documents Needed to Apply:
- Income tax returns (yours and most likely your parents), W-2 forms, and other records of income
- Identification documents (social security cards, drivers licenses)
- Get complete list of documents
- Submit a FAFSA
- Submit a FAFSA Online
- The FAFSA is used to apply for federal financial aid (grants, work-study, and loans)
- Many colleges, universities, and career schools use your FAFSA information to award state and college aid
- The process is free! (never pay to apply for federal financial aid)
- You need a PIN to electronically sign your online FAFSA, make corrections to the application, and more
- Dependent students' parents will need a PIN also
- Get a PIN now! or as you complete the FAFSA - it's up to you
- Use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to electronically transfer your IRS tax return amounts needed to complete or correct your FAFSA. Watch this tutorial to see how.
Get Free Information and Help From
- NOTE: Complete the FAFSA each year, starting on January 1
- Be sure you meet application deadlines for OTAG (Oklahoma Tuition Aid Grant)
Additional Help Completing the FAFSA:
- your school counselor
- the financial aid office at the college, university, or career school you plan to attend
- the U.S. Department of Education (online chat available) or 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243)
Step 2: What's Next?
Make Corrections to Your SAR
- After You Submit the FAFSA
- We process your FAFSA
- The results are sent electronically to the schools you listed on your application
- We send you a Student Aid Report (SAR).
- The Student Aid Report (SAR)
- Your SAR summarizes all the information you provided on your FAFSA
- It must be correct before you can receive federal aid
- Read the information below to find out how and when you will receive your SAR and what to do with it once you receive it
- How and When You Will Receive Your SAR
- Generally, it takes less time to process and send the SAR when you submit the FAFSA online and provide a valid e-mail address
- If we have your valid e-mail address, you'll get your SAR e-mail in 3-5 days
- This e-mail contains a secure link to your SAR online
- If you don't provide a valid e-mail address, it takes about seven to 10 days before you receive your SAR by postal mail
- If you submit a paper FAFSA, you'll receive your SAR by e-mail within 2 weeks, or 3 weeks if you do not provide an e-mail address
- NOTE: If you have a PIN and your FAFSA has been processed, you can login at to view SAR information regardless of whether you filed the online or paper FAFSA or provided an e-mail address or not
- What To Do with Your SAR
- When you get your SAR, review it for accuracy.
A complete, correct SAR will contain your:
Step 3: Follow Up on Your FAFSA
- Your application will be processed and you will receive an email message with a link to your Student Aid Report (SAR).
- If you did not provide an email address, you will receive your SAR by mail.
- You should review your SAR for any necessary corrections or updates.
- If you do not hear from us within three weeks go to www.fafsa.ed.gov and select "Check the Status of a Submitted FAFSA."
Step 4: Submit Additional Information to the RSU Office of Financial Aid
Once the RSU Office of Financial Aid has received your SAR, we will send you a letter requesting any additional information that may be required to complete your financial aid file. You can also check for required documents on your Hillcat Hub account. Some items we may request include:
- IRS tax transcript and W-2’s.
- Get a copy of your Tax Return Transcript online:
- Visit www.irs.gov
- Under Tools, click on "Get Transcript of Your Tax Records"
- Select either "Get Transcript ONLINE or "Get Transcript by MAIL"
- Complete the request
- Order a Tax Return Transcript via telephone:
- 2012-2013 Verification Form (V1, V3, V4, V5, V6)
Step 5: Financial Aid Awards
After you have provided all the necessary information to the RSU Office of Financial Aid, your file will be given to a financial aid counselor.
- Your financial aid award will be based on the credit hours in which you are enrolled and your eligibility, as determined by the U.S. Department of Education (based on the information you provided on the FAFSA.)
- When your file is complete and your awards have been determined, you will be sent an award letter if it is your first time to attend.
- Your financial aid award letter may list several types of aid. You may accept all of the aid awarded to you, part of it, or none of the aid.
- However, you must sign and return the award letter within two weeks, indicating your decision to accept or reject the awards.
- If you are a returning student you will be notified via email to go on the Hillcat Hub to view and accept your awards.
Step 6: Be Aware of Deadlines
Students must adhere to the following deadlines to apply for financial aid at RSU:
- January 1: Complete your FAFSA as soon after this date as possible to be considered for all financial aid programs.
- March 1: Priority date for submitting a scholarship application.
- June 1: Any additional documents requested by the Financial Aid office must be submitted to be eligible for September disbursement of funds.
2014-2015 Processing Deadlines for Verification and Direct Loans
|January 1, 2014
||The FAFSA is available for completion.
|March 1, 2014
||Priority date for submitting a scholarship application for state grant.
|June 1, 2014
||Any additional documents requested by the Financial Aid Office must be submitted to be eligible for the September disbursement of funds.
|December 3, 2014
||Last day to turn in verification documents for fall 2014 only loans.
|May 4, 2015
||Last day to turn in verification documents for fall 2014/spring 2015 loans or spring 2015 loans only.
|July 20, 2015
||Last day to turn in verification documents for fall 2014/spring 2015/summer 2015 loans or summer 2015 only loans.
2014-2015 Processing Deadlines for PELL
|Last day to receive valid FAFSA (not rejected).
Federal deadline last day enrolled.
|1 day prior fall finals
|1 day prior spring finals
|1 day prior summer finals
Last day for students to submit verification data.
Federal deadline earlier of 120 days after last day enrolled or 9-28-2015
|15 weeks after end of fall
|15 weeks after end of spring
|6 weeks after end of summer
Last day to receive verified ISIR.
Federal deadline earlier of 120 days after last day enrolled or 9-28-2015
~ An official Student Aid Report (SAR) with an EFC must already be processed in order to submit late verification documents.
Summer Financial Aid
A separate award package is created for those who have remaining financial aid eligibility and who are attending the summer session once the Financial Aid Office has received your Application for Summer Financial Aid. Some students may have received their annual maximum amounts from during the fall and spring semester and will not have any federal aid remaining for summer term.
Have Special Circumstances?
The Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA) allows financial aid administrators to make professional judgment decisions for special or unusual family or student circumstances. Circumstances requiring professional judgment decisions must be analyzed on a case-by-case basis. The reason for the adjustment must relate to your special circumstances. Professional judgment decisions may be made to adjust eligibility for all institutional, Title IV, and campus-based aid. Special circumstances include things such as a changes in your family's income, homelessness, unusually high medical or child care expenses.
Need Help Applying?
Get assistance in completing the FAFSA or ask any questions.
Toll-Free Help Line
between 8:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m.
1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) or 1-800-730-8913 (TTY) for the hearing impaired
RSU Office of Financial Aid
between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
Monday through Friday
918-343-7553 or 1-800-256-7511