NASFAA Submits Comments on 2015-16 Draft FAFSA

Karen McCarthy, NASFAA Policy & Federal Relations Staff 

In written comments submitted yesterday on the draft 2015-16 paper Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), NASFAA encourages the Department of Education (ED) to exercise its authority to use prior-prior-year (PPY) income data within the next few years, and to work with the IRS to enhance the data retrieval tool (DRT) and improve its efficiency.

In response to concerns about use of the school listing on the Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) for packaging purposes, NASFAA recommends alphabetizing or randomizing the list of schools on the ISIR and notifying applicants during FAFSA completion that the school list is sent to all institutions selected by the student.

NASFAA also made several technical suggestions and recommended an overhaul of the Student Aid Report (SAR) to improve its layout, readability, and general user-friendliness.


Publication Date: 10/28/2014

Dotti D | 11/5/2014 2:55:34 PM

We use the ordering of the school choice to determine level of interest. We found that over 70% that listed us first matriculated. We specifically target these students. This would be disastrous to have the order listed alphabetically.

Martha L | 10/31/2014 4:41:20 PM

This would be a concern for South Carolina students receiving the SC Tuition Grant. The first private SC College listed on the FAFSA is the school that is eligible to receive this grant.

Judith C | 10/31/2014 9:1:08 AM

In a state that requires the number one position, the school can generally make the change for the student, so I don't see state aid as a real issue not to do this. However it's such a popular urban myth that position matters, most school's internal research will be thrown off by this.

Jessica S | 10/29/2014 1:5:18 PM

I second William B's concern. It is similar in Indiana, so this potentially has implications for us as well.

William B | 10/28/2014 9:29:42 AM

Did NASFAA confer with the state grant agencies, or their national organization on the ordering of school choices? In Pennsylvania, the PHEAA State Grant Agency will send their state grant award to the first listed school, if an eligible participant and if a student chooses a school not listed on first on their FAFSA, they need to make a correction, or contact the PHEAA Agency directly.

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