The Financial Aid Toolkit helps counselors and mentors advise students about paying for college or career school.

Find out who this site is for, how to make the most of it, and where to send your students and their parents for information designed for them.

How to Use the Financial Aid Toolkit Site

The Financial Aid Toolkit provides school counselors and other college access mentors with information and resources about federal student aid. This site contains material about different types of financial aid, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) form, outreach, and training opportunities. You'll find fact sheets, videos, PowerPoint presentations, and other resources to share with students to help them learn about the process of applying for, receiving, and repaying financial aid.


Send your students and their parents to StudentAid.gov for federal student aid information.


Who is this site for?
What if I'm a student or parent looking for financial aid information for myself?
How can I find the specific information I'm looking for on this site?
What if I want information for a certain type of audience?
Is there information in languages other than English?
Is it okay to share this site's information and resources on my site or in my communications?
Is there a way to tell when a new resource is added to this site?
How can I share information about this site with my colleagues?
How can I provide feedback on the site itself or on the resources?


Who is this site for?

This site was designed for high school counselors, TRIO and GEAR UP staff, and mentors from college access organizations. Others who may find it useful include librarians, financial aid staff at colleges, tribal education departments, scholarship providers, and anyone who advises students about getting money for college or career school. The level of detail on the site is intended for counselors and mentors. This site is not written with students and parents in mind.

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What if I'm a student or parent looking for financial aid information for myself?

You should visit StudentAid.gov, which has information about topics including these:

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How can I find the specific information I'm looking for on this site?

There are a few ways you can find information on the site:

  • Browse the black-and-white menu near the top of the page. As you hover over a menu item, it changes color, and any subpages will appear as a dropdown menu. By exploring the menu, you'll see what topics are covered on the site.
  • Use the green "I want to..." dropdown menu at the top right of any page on the site, near the Search box. You'll find several tasks that people frequently come to the site to complete, and if you click on a task, you'll be taken directly to a page that'll help you.

You also should check out the Search Financial Aid Tools and Resources page, where you can search for fact sheets, videos, infographics, PowerPoint presentations, and more, using a tool that allows you to filter by type of resource, audience, and topic.


What if I want information for a certain type of audience?

Check out the Targeting Your Outreach page for information on answering questions from parents, student loan borrowers, military families, and more. We'd also recommend the following:


Is there information in languages other than English?

Yes; most of our information for students and parents is available in Spanish as well as English.

  • As you look through the list of resources on the Search Financial Aid Tools and Resources page, you'll see that each resource has a description, an indicator of the resource type, and—in many cases—indicators of other available formats and of other resources that are closely related to that resource. Any resource available in Spanish will have a hyperlink to its Spanish version on the "Also Available In" line of its entry.
  • If you're working with a student or parent who's more comfortable reading Spanish than English, send him or her to StudentAid.gov and point out the "Español" link at the upper left corner of any page. Almost all of the site has been translated into Spanish.
  • This site has a page with tips on answering questions asked by non-U.S. citizens; some of that information may be of use to you.
  • The U.S. Department of Education does make interpretation and translation services available for inquirers who speak languages other than English or Spanish. Information about language assistance services is available from 1-800-USA-LEARN (1-800-872-5327) (TTY for the deaf or hard of hearing: 1-800-730-8913) or ed.language.assistance@ed.gov.

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Is it okay to share this site's information and resources on my site or in my communications?

Yes; we're happy for counselors and mentors to share our information. Just make sure you use our content in a manner that's consistent with the goals of the U.S. Department of Education—e.g., don't sell our information and don't claim to be the Department of Education. Ways counselors and mentors are sharing our information include the following:

  • Downloading, printing out, and distributing our fact sheets
  • Copying and pasting a paragraph or checklist into a school newsletter or onto a school website
  • Showing our YouTube videos at college nights
  • Retweeting us or sharing our Facebook posts
  • Linking to our infographics
  • Embedding our videos in school or organization websites

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Is there a way to tell when a new resource is added to this site?

Yes; when you visit the Search Financial Aid Tools and Resources page, above the search tool you'll see an orange and white icon and some information about our RSS feed, which updates each time we add a new resource (or a new version of an existing resource).

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Here are a few ideas for letting your colleagues know about the Financial Aid Toolkit:


Remember, when you let your colleagues know about the Financial Aid Toolkit, stress to them that this site is for them and not for their students. Students and parents should visit StudentAid.gov for financial aid information.


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How can I provide feedback on the site itself or on the resources?

Please let us know what you think by emailing us on the "Contact Us" page. Thank you!

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