How Eligibility for Financial Aid is Determined

Determining Eligibility

To be considered for federal student aid, you must complete a FAFSA. The FAFSA collects financial and other information used to calculate your expected family contribution (EFC). Your EFC is calculated according to a formula established by federal law. The federal formula takes various factors into account including:

  • Student and/or Parent income
  • Family size
  • Assets (Student/Parents)
  • Number of family members in college, not including parents if you are a dependent student

Your EFC will appear on your Student Aid Report (SAR) once your FAFSA has been processed by the Central Processor.

To determine your financial need and the different types of financial aid that you may be eligible for we use the following formula:

Cost of Attendance - Expected Family Contribution (EFC) = Financial Need

The Office of Financial Aid will put together a financial aid package that comes as close as possible to meeting your need. One of the key factors, in addition to need, that determines the amount of aid that a student can receive in an academic year is availability of funds. As a result, the total dollars awarded to you may fall short of the amount for which you are eligible. Charter Oak, like most schools, will not be able to meet full need as demonstrated by many aid applicants without self-help aid (i.e., student loans). Therefore, it is very important to meet our application priority date to receive the maximum amount of grant aid available.

Financial aid applications are processed on a rolling basis and in the order in which they become complete. We recommend that students log into their ACORN account to access timely information regarding financial aid, including deadlines, disbursement schedules, forms and policies.

*Please note that financial aid does not cover the admissions application fee or the graduate program deposit fee. On a case-by-case basis, eligible undergraduate students may receive an undergraduate  deposit deferral. Financial aid does not cover late registration fees, graduation fees, transcript fees, bad check fees, or diploma replacement fees. Financial aid does not cover payment plan set-up fees, COSC exams or CLEP/DSST (formerly known as Dantes) testing fees.   Additionally, financial aid does not cover certificate program fees or non-credit certificate program fees, visiting student proctor fees, Certificate in Infant/Toddler Care, Connecticut Director’s Credentials, the Connecticut Parenting Educator Credential, contract learning fees, credential credit fees, credential in afterschool education, credit registry –general, credit registry for Connecticut teachers, credit registry for early childhood teachers, Early Adult Childhood- Alternative Route to Certification, portfolio assessment fees and non-credit assessments fees, practicum fees, and the Connecticut Credit Assessment (CCAAP) review.

 At this time, undocumented students do not qualify for state or federal financial aid.   Under a new state law, undocumented students may be eligible to receive institutional financial aid.