The Federal Student Aid Handbook consists of the Application and Verification Guide, six numbered volumes, and appendices. Each volume and appendix is posted on the Web after being reviewed and approved by the appropriate offices in Federal Student Aid and the Office of Postsecondary Education.

Throughout the Federal Student Aid Handbook, we use “college,” “school,” and “institution” interchangeably unless a more specific use is given. Similarly, “student,” “applicant,” and “aid recipient” are synonyms. “Parents” in this volume refers to the parents of dependent students, and “you” refers to the primary audience of the handbook: financial aid administrators at colleges. “We” indicates the U.S. Department of Education (the Department, ED), and “federal student aid” and “Title IV aid” are synonymous terms for the financial aid programs offered by the Department.

We appreciate any comments that you have on the Federal Student Aid Handbook. We often revise the text based on questions and feedback from the financial aid community, so please email us at fsaschoolspubs@ed.gov about how to improve the handbook so it’s clear and informative.

Published: 03/28/2021