You must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) if you want to apply for federal and state financial aid. Many colleges and universities, especially public institutions, also require the FAFSA. You must submit the FAFSA every year that you want aid. The FAFSA is available in paper and electronic formats. You can get the paper version from your high school, the financial aid office at any college or university, the public library, or by calling 1-800-4-FED-AID. If you prefer, you can fill out a web-based version of the FAFSA at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov (step-by-step instructions are provided on this site).

FAFSA on the Web offers several benefits, including: You will get your Student Aid Report (SAR) sooner than with the paper form. Your FAFSA will be more accurate than a paper application, since the FAFSA on the Web has built-in edit checks to catch simple errors and you avoid errors introduced by the OCR (Optical Character Resolution) process. You will save the federal government money by reducing their processing costs.