What the Changes to the 2017-18 FAFSA and Iowa Financial Aid Application Mean to You
Each year, students and families must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to apply for federal financial aid. The following two changes for the 2017-18 FAFSA aim to make the process easier for all applicants. First, students planning to attend college in the fall of 2017 will be able to file the 2017-18 FAFSA as soon as October 1, 2016, as opposed to the previous January 1 application date.
Secondly, students and families will use tax information from an earlier tax year, known as prior-prior year (PPY), to fill out the FAFSA. These changes will make the FAFSA easier to submit due to readily available tax return data and the use of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, and could potentially allow colleges and universities to provide financial aid award letters to students earlier, giving students and families more time to review, prepare and decide on a college.
These changes also apply to the Iowa Financial Aid Application, an additional application required to be considered for many grants and scholarships administered by the state of Iowa. Beginning with the 2017-18 academic year, the Iowa Financial Aid Application will be available on October 1, 2016. Iowa students can link directly to the Iowa Financial Aid Application from the FAFSA or access the application from the home page of Iowa College Aid's website.
For more information on the changes to the FAFSA, please visit to the Federal Student Aid’s website.