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(Application Processing) Subject: Restructuring of Electronic Data Exchange (EDE) Record Layouts

Posted Date:July 16, 2009

Author: William Leith, Service Director, Program Management, Federal Student Aid

Subject: Restructuring of Electronic Data Exchange (EDE) Record Layouts

For the upcoming 2010-2011 processing cycle, we are restructuring the organization of the Central Processing System (CPS) record layouts we provide in the Electronic Data Exchange (EDE) Technical Reference to more easily implement data element modifications without significantly impacting the financial aid software systems used by schools, servicers, and other agencies.

Currently, the record layouts in the EDE Technical Reference are organized by “like” data elements. When record layout revisions are required due to legislative changes or other enhancements, we implement those revisions to the applicable section of the record layout or, in the case of new fields, append them to the end of layout. In either case, the start and end positions are affected for fields subsequent to the revisions and the overall record length is increased, significantly impacting schools, servicers, and third-party-system developers who code systems based upon our EDE record layouts.

To minimize impacts to the layouts for the 2010-2011 cycle and forward, we are adding filler spaces after existing “data blocks” such as student demographic information, financial information, dependency determination questions, and parental information. When mid-cycle changes are needed to particular data elements, we will use these filler field positions to add, remove, or revise those data elements. As a result, the impact of the change will only affect the existing filler blocks and not the entire record layout. We anticipate this change will reduce the impact of data element changes to the CPS and the systems that utilize the EDE record layouts.

The 2010-2011 EDE Technical Reference layouts affected by this change include the ISIR Record Description/Data Dictionary and FAFSA Application Export Record Layout. An initial draft of the technical reference containing these updated record layouts is scheduled to be posted to the Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP) and Federal Student Aid Download (FSAdownload) Web sites in late August 2009.

If You Have Questions

If you have questions regarding this message, contact CPS/SAIG Technical Support at 800/330-5947 (TDD/TTY 800/511-5806) or by e-mail at

Last Modified: 07/15/2009