New financial aid tool helps families determine whether they will qualify for federal financial aid

May 31, 2007

Last month, the federal government launched a new online tool to help families predict whether they’ll qualify for federal financial aid. Called the FAFSA4caster, it’s modeled on the government’s official aid application, the FAFSA (which stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid).

The FAFSA4caster estimates a family’s expected family contribution to college costs and notes whether a family will qualify for the federal Pell grant program, allowing families to plan ahead for the cost of college. To use the tool, parents will need to enter their child’s Social Security number, as well as their own tax and financial information.

When you’re ready to apply for aid, you can easily transition from FAFSA4caster to FAFSA on the Web. Much of the information that you enter in the FAFSA4caster will populate your FAFSA on the Web application, making the experience of applying for federal student aid a lot easier.

To see the tool, visit the Department of Education’s website at

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