Our overarching goals for FSA Partner Connect include providing improved experiences for customers in accessing data pertinent to their school or organization, information contained in the Federal Student Aid (FSA) Handbook, and guidance published and maintained in the Knowledge Center. To assist in meeting those goals and supporting increased website use, we will periodically publish “Helpful Information About” announcements that provide bite-sized nuggets of information about different features of the FSA Partner Connect website.
This is our first “Helpful Information About” announcement and focuses on the FSA Partner Connect Help Center and the FSA Handbook.
FSA Partner Connect Help Center
Where is the FSA Partner Connect Help Center located and what resources are available there?
The FSA Partner Connect Help Center is located at https://fsapartners.ed.gov/help-center. In addition to bookmarking the URL, you can access the Help Center by clicking on one of two “Help Center” links located on every page within FSA Partner Connect. The first Help Center link is in the right corner of the grey menu bar at the top of each page. The second Help Center link is in the right corner of the footer at the bottom of each page.
FSA Partner Connect Help Center resources include the following:
Contact Customer Support – Here you will find the Contact Customer Support form through which you can ask questions on a variety of topics, including federal student aid policy questions, or to offer feedback on the site. In addition, you will find the contact information and operating hours for the School Relations Center.
Learn how to use the Contact Customer Support form to submit policy questions in “How do I use the Contact Customer Support form to submit federal student aid policy questions to FSA?” below.
FSA Customer Service Center – Here you will find contact information and operating hours for Service Centers for schools and students, Loan Servicing Centers for schools and students, and FSA offices.
FSA Partner Connect Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) – Here you will find frequently asked questions and answers related to navigating FSA Partner Connect. Current FAQ sections include Account Access, Account Settings, Dashboard, New Features, Knowledge Center, FSA Handbook, Partner Connect Services, and Contact Us/Help.
Access to FSA Systems – Here you will find a comprehensive list of FSA systems, explanations about how these FSA systems are used to administer federal student aid, and instructions on how to access the systems.
How do I use the Contact Customer Support form to submit federal student aid policy questions to FSA?
Beginning on May 28, 2021, submit your policy questions to FSA using the Contact Customer Support form available on the Help Center’s Contact Customer Support page. Once on the page, complete the following steps:
Enter your First Name, Last Name, and Email Address.
Select FSA Ask A Fed/Policy from the Topic drop-down menu.
Enter your policy question in the Question/Feedback text box.
Click on Submit.
Ask A Fed Mailbox Change – Now that FSA Partner Connect Customer Support is in place to receive policy questions, FSA will repurpose its Ask A Fed mailbox. Beginning May 28th and going forward, FSA will no longer monitor the Ask A Fed mailbox or respond to questions submitted to that mailbox by external entities. We ask that you immediately begin submitting your federal student aid policy questions through the Contact Customer Support form as described above.
Given our move from Ask A Fed to FSA Partner Connect Customer Support for federal student aid policy questions, remember to update your organization’s process and contact guidance to reflect this change.
Where is the FSA Handbook located on FSA Partner Connect and what is the best way to search for information needed?
The FSA Handbook is located within the Knowledge Center on FSA Partner Connect. Users can navigate directly to the FSA Handbook landing page at Federal Student Aid Handbook | Knowledge Center and read the digital or PDF versions of the FSA Handbook. No login is required.
Although there is a Search Entire Handbook function within the digital versions of the FSA Handbook, the functionality is not returning the expected results. Instead, results unrelated to search terms entered are being returned. We have identified the source of this issue and plan to resolve it in July 2021.
Until we resolve the Search Entire Handbook issue, you can search individual chapters of the digital FSA Handbook by navigating to those chapters and performing a browser search using “Ctrl-F.”
Can I point my colleagues to specific content in the FSA Handbook without using page numbers?
Yes, you can with the digital FSA Handbook! To do so, navigate to a Handbook chapter and then right click on one of the section headings in the drop-down list. Click Copy link or Copy link address to get the link to that specific section and pass it along to your colleagues. For example, to see information about the 90/10 Revenue Test, you can navigate directly to that section of the 2020-2021 Handbook, Volume 2, Chapter 4 using this link.
FSA Partner Connect Resources
Training and Additional Information
A comprehensive set of training resources about FSA Partner Connect, including webinars, tutorials, and quick reference job aids, is available on the FSA Training Center website. Refer to the March 11, 2021 Training Announcement for details about how to access the training resources, including how to create a username and password for the FSA Training Center if you do not already have one. After logging in, select Training Courses from the main menu bar, then FSA Partner Connect from the drop-down menu.
Partner Experience Council
The Partner Experience Council includes over 350 individuals representing schools, servicers, and state agencies that provide services related to federal student aid and provides FSA with direct, continuous feedback from our partners in the field. Members share their knowledge and insight by participating in optional user engagement and research activities such as surveys, interviews, usability sessions, and focus groups. In addition, members provide feedback on and test new features before deployment. FSA seeks additional council members on an annual basis in conjunction with the FSA Training Conference.
If you have questions or would like to provide feedback about FSA Partner Connect, complete the Customer Support form at fsapartners.ed.gov or call the School Relations Center at 1-800-848-0978.