The FAFSA and the CSS Profile are the two main forms required to become eligible
for need-based financial aid in the United States. Please take note how it does
NOT show anywhere on either site the formulas used to produce your EFC (Expected
Family Contribution). In fact, they only tell you about potential errors that
could be lowering your EFC. They conveniently leave out the potential errors
increasing your EFC. 123College Senior Counselors know exactly how every line on
the forms will affect how much you're expected to pay for college.
These are free outside scholarship search sites tested by our Senior Counselors.
You may NOT want to apply for outside scholarships if you qualify for need-based
aid. Some college and universities will deduct the amount of aid they provide
should you be awarded an outside scholarship. Please consult with a 123College
Senior Counselor for more information. Here are the sites to apply for outside
college scholarships and grants.
The SAT and ACT board exams are required for admission to most major college and
universities. The following companies are the most reputable in the board exam
test preparation industry. 123College provides Kaplanís top of the line self-study
guide book, cd-rom with practice tests, and online access to the Kaplan site to
chat with real live Kaplan tutors to all students who subscribe.
Federal student loans are a part of almost every financial aid package. Some
of them are considered true forms and financial aid while others are not. In
many instances, it may take the guidance of a Senior Counselor to distinguish
which loans are best for your family. Since July of 2010, the Federal Government
has taken control of all new Federal student loans such as the Stafford, SEOG,
Perkins, and PLUS. It no longer pays to shop around for interest rates for these
loans as they are all the same. You should apply for the 0.25% interest rate
reduction on some Federal loans by utilizing the direct deposit program.
Private student loans are an alternative payment source for parents and
students. These programs should be used as a last resort before using retirement
dollars. 123College Senior Counselors have helped thousands of families avoid
having to take out private loans by using various college planning techniques.