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(General) Subject: Redesigned IFAP Web Site Clarifications

Posted Date:December 15, 2008

Author: Jana Hernandes, Service Director, Operations, Federal Student Aid

Subject: Redesigned IFAP Web Site Clarifications

Since our implementation of the reorganized and redesigned Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP) Web site on November 23, 2008, we have received requests for clarification on just a few basic items. For the benefit of all IFAP users, we address those items and highlight a few others in this announcement:

  • Orienting to the Site

  • Updating Bookmarked URLs

  • Changing/Resetting Passwords via My IFAP

  • Locating the Federal Student Aid Handbook

  • Locating Dear Colleague Letters and Electronic Announcements

  • Locating Publications

  • Locating FAFSA and SAR Materials

  • Locating Consolidated Processing Information

  • Locating Past Direct Loan Bulletins

Orienting to the Site - As we previously communicated, the redesigned IFAP Web site offers many new features. Prior to implementation, we provided a high-level overview of the site's key features to assist in orienting users to the site. We encourage all users to read the high-level overview and are attaching it to this announcement to assist in easy access.

Updating Bookmarked URLs - The main URL for the IFAP Web site is http://ifap.ed.gov. In some cases, users may have bookmarked a different version of the URL. The use of past versions of the URL will result in an error message. In addition, some bookmarked links to publications such as the Federal Student Aid Handbook will result in the same error message. To avoid issues, users should reset all bookmarks related to the IFAP Web site.

Changing/Resetting Passwords via My IFAP - As explained in the high-level overview, the My IFAP link at the top of the navigation area on the left side of the Home Page replaces what was previously called IFAP Member Services. For registered members of the previous IFAP Member Services who received IFAP subscription e-mails, there has been no interruption in subscription service. Subscribers have automatically continued to receive these e-mails, and no action is required if they wish to continue receiving the IFAP weekly subscription e-mails.

Registered members may take advantage of the following upgrades to the previous service under My IFAP:

  • Option to subscribe to and receive a daily IFAP subscription e-mail

  • Ability to change/reset a password

  • Ability to bookmark pages of interest on the site

If a user wants the ability to change/reset a password, he or she must first establish a set of security questions. To do this, the user must successfully log in by entering a valid username and password. If the user has forgotten his or her username and/or password, he or she should complete the following steps to request assistance:

1) Click on the Feedback link located on the menu bar at the top of the Home page.

2) Click on the Feedback Regarding IFAP or My IFAP box.

3) State the need for a password reset in the Questions or Comments field and enter name, e-mail address, and phone number information in the identified fields.

4) Click on Submit.

The Web Communications Team will contact the user and help to reset the password. Following that, the user will be able to log in, establish the set of security questions, and then change/reset his or her password in the future.

Locating the Federal Student Aid Handbook - Users can quickly access the Federal Student Aid Handbook via the Handbook item in the feature area on the right side of the Home page. Both the current handbook and archived versions of the handbook can be accessed via this item.

Locating Dear Colleague Letters and Electronic Announcements - Users can quickly access Dear Colleague Letters and Electronic Announcements via the Letters & Announcements item in the feature area on the right side of the Home page. Both current and archived versions of these communications can be accessed via this item.

Locating Publications - Users can quickly access program-related and processing related publications (such as guides, handbooks, and technical references) via the Publications box in the top center of the site's Home page.

Locating FAFSA and SAR Materials - Users can quickly access postings related to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the Student Aid Report (SAR) via the Processing Resources box in the top center of the Home page. The FAFSA and SAR Materials link is the fourth link located on the Processing Resources page.

Locating Consolidated Processing Information - Users can quickly access consolidated operational communications and guidance, technical documents, and related information specific to our major system/program areas via three processing information pages. The page links are located under the Processing Resources box in the top center of the site's Home page. The processing information pages are as follows:

  • Application Processing Information

  • Campus-Based Processing Information

  • Grant and Direct Loan (COD) Processing Information

Locating Past Direct Loan Bulletins - As explained in the high-level overview, we have retired the previous Direct Loan Bulletin format and will now use our new Direct Loan Electronic Announcement type to communicate Direct Loan-related information. All Direct Loan Bulletins posted prior to November 23, 2008 are now available under Direct Loan Bulletins and able to be accessed via one of the following navigation options:

  • Direct Loans page under Grant and Direct Loan (COD) Processing Information

  • Archives area of iLibrary on the menu bar at the top of the Home Page

Contact Information

If you have questions about the redesigned IFAP Web site or need assistance locating documents, please submit your requests to us via the site's Feedback Regarding the IFAP Web Site or My IFAP page or via e-mail to ifap@ed.gov.

We look forward to continuing to serve you through the reorganized and redesigned IFAP Web site.

Last Modified: 12/14/2008