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24-25 Major FAFSA Changes

The 2024-2025 FAFSA is Now Open!
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The federal government is holding submitted FAFSAs awaiting a correction in the aid formula. Colleges and universities cannot provide accurate financial aid information until this information is released. Expected delivery is mid-March.

A better FAFSA® process means a better future for everyone
Make sure to complete the application prior to March 1, 2024, to be considered for priority aid.

FAFSA Simplification

Due to the passing of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Simplification Act on December 27, 2020, as a part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, the FAFSA is changing for the 2024-2025 academic year.

You can expect the following changes:

  • The 2024-2025 FAFSA opened December 31, 2023. The 2024-2025 FAFSA determines your financial aid eligibility for the fall 2024, spring 2025, and summer 2025 semesters.
  • The FAFSA application process will be streamlined and easier for students to complete.
  • New terminology will be added to the FAFSA.
  • Eligibility for federal financial aid will be expanded.

We will continue to update this page as additional information becomes available. You can learn more about the specific changes, timeline, and how to prepare below.

FAFSA changes for 2024-2025

Streamlined application process

  • The FAFSA will feature fewer questions, fewer requirements, and retrieve tax information using a direct data exchange from the IRS instead of the previous IRS Data Retrieval Tool.

New terminology and information

  • The need analysis formula to determine financial aid, formally known as the Expected Family Contribution (EFC), will now be referred to as the Student Aid Index (SAI). The new formula removes the number of family members in college from the calculation, better reflects the FAFSA results, and implements a separate eligibility determination criterion for Federal Pell Grants.
  • The FAFSA is introducing the new term " contributor" which refers to anyone who is required to provide information on a student’s FAFSA form, including the student, the student’s spouse, a biological or adopted parent, or the parent’s spouse. Being a contributor does not imply responsibility for the student's college costs.

Expanding Pell Grant eligibility

  • The adjustments to the new Student Aid Index (SAI) calculation will expand Federal Pell Grant eligibility to more students.


December 2023

March 2024

  • SU will begin to receive submitted FAFSA data from the Dept of Education by the middle to the end of March.

April 2024

  • Students will be able to submit FAFSA corrections and updates in the first half of April.
  • If you are admitted to the University and have completed the financial aid process (FAFSA), you will receive an Estimated Financial Aid Offer from our Financial Aid Office via email and U.S. mail by the end of April (subject to change). This information will also be available in your Admissions Status Portal.

Mid - Summer 2024

  • Returning students will receive an Estimated Financial Aid Offer the middle of June via email from the Financial Aid Office.

Pro Tips for the 2024-2025 FAFSA Form

Federal Student Aid has recently released Pro Tips for the 2024-25 FAFSA Form.

  • Get a (formerly a FSA ID) account before filling out the FAFSA form.
  • Have your documents ready.
  • Students, have your contributor information ready.
  • You (the student) should complete your section of the form first.
  • Make sure to read all questions and definitions carefully.
  • Consult in-form resources if you need help.
  • Don't forget to review, sign and submit the form!
  • Remember that if you make a mistake, you can correct it in the first half of March.

Read more about tips for preparing to fill out the FAFSA form


  • Federal Student Aid - What is the FAFSA Simplification Act?
  • Federal Student Aid Estimator - With this tool, students can find out how much federal student aid they may be eligible for starting with the 2024-2025 academic award year. This estimator is not the actual FAFSA form. The 2024-2025 FAFSA will be available in December 2023.
  • FAFSA Checklist:  Follow these steps to fill out the FAFSA each year to apply for most types of financial aid: FAFSA Checklist (
  • Financial Aid Checklist:  Follow these steps in your senior year of high school to apply for financial aid.  Deadlines vary by state and college so complete the steps when you can, even if it’s past the suggested timing:  Financial Aid Checklist (
  • Important FAFSA Changes from MHEC for Maryland Resident Students: MHEC has extended the Maryland financial aid deadline to submit the 24-25 FAFSA to JUNE 1, 2024. However, students are encouraged to submit the FAFSA by the priority deadline of March 1, 2024 to receive notification of eligibility by April 15, 2024. To learn more about MD State Financial Aid go to Important FAFSA Changes (
24-25 Major FAFSA Changes Video Cover

What’s Changed for the 2024–25 FAFSA® Form?