Harper College

Complete the FAFSA

Applying for federal and state grants starts with completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) administered by the U.S. Department of Education. General Eligibility Requirements must be met for students to be considered for federal and state financial aid programs.

How to Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

1.  Create a StudentAid.gov Account
If you have not done so already, you and each contributor will need to create a StudentAid.gov account. This will create an FSA ID (username and password) that is used to electronically sign your FAFSA. If you are a dependent student, a parent will also need to create a StudentAid.gov account.

If you or a contributor have an FSA ID from a prior year, you will continue to use it to reapply for financial aid each year. Watch this video on creating a StudentAid.gov account.

Creating a StudentAid.gov Account Without a Social Security Number

Contributors who do not have a social security number must also create a StudentAid.gov account. Follow the instructions in the link below. Some individuals are experiencing issues starting or accessing the 2024-25 FAFSA. The U.S. Department of Education is aware of these issues and is working on resolutions.  

  • How to Submit the 2024-25 FAFSA Form if Your Contributor Doesn't Have an SSN web link and PDF.

Important U.S. Department of Education Notice April 30, 2024:

Applicants and contributors without a Social Security number (SSN) can immediately access the online FAFSA form and submit the form after creating a StudentAid.gov account. The Department is temporarily allowing individuals without an SSN to enter and complete the FAFSA form. Students and contributors must manually enter their tax information. Students without an SSN must verify their eligible noncitizen status through their school before they receive any federal funds. These changes streamline the process for students who have contributors without an SSN to complete their FAFSA form.

This temporary allowance for those individuals without an SSN, to enter and complete the FAFSA form, will only be available until the IRS data retrieval issues for those without an SSN are resolved. The Department is working on a resolution and will share an update as soon as possible. The Department will continue to work expeditiously to complete the manual validation process for those without an SSN. The Department is committed to ensuring that all students and families, regardless of their background can equitably access the FAFSA form.


2.  Gather Information
You will need to have specific information available when completing the FAFSA. Watch this video and print the PDF below to gather your information.

We encourage you to complete the FAFSA as early as possible to maximize your chances of receiving assistance.

You must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) every academic year.

  • 2024-25 FAFSA (use 2022 federal tax information)
  • 2023-24 FAFSA (use 2021 federal tax information)

Be sure to add Harper College's School Code: 003961 to ensure that your information is sent to Harper.

The FAFSA is available in English and Spanish. For assistance in English or Spanish, contact the Federal Student Aid Information Center (FSAIC).

Interpretation services are available for assistance in a different language. See information on requesting an interpreter.

There are follow-up steps for you to take after completing the FAFSA.

1.  Review the Student Aid Report (SAR) / FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS)
Once you submit the FAFSA, the U.S Department of Education emails a copy of the information you submitted on the FAFSA.  For 2023-24, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR).  For 2024-25, you will receive a confirmation email and FAFSA Submission Summary (FSS). You may also view your SAR/FSS online. If there are any errors or rejections noted on the SAR/FSS, promptly follow the instructions to make the corrections. You may request assistance from Harper College with making corrections.

2.  Complete and Submit Requested Documents to Harper College
We may request additional forms and documents to verify your eligibility and the information you provided on the FAFSA. You must submit these within the Federal verification and disbursement deadlines. Failure to provide this information and respond to discrepancies may result in you not receiving financial aid.

We send financial aid requirements and other important information via email. You can view your outstanding requirements in the Finances tab on the MyHarper Portal. Click on View my Financial Aid Checklist and Details and then select the appropriate aid year. Follow the instructions and include the required signatures. While reviewing your information, corrections may be required to your FAFSA and these will be made by the financial aid staff.

3.  Complete the Title IV Authorization Form
Every student receiving federal student aid is required to complete the Title IV Authorization Form each year. This form is in your requirements in the Finances tab on the MyHarper Portal.

4.  Receive a Financial Aid Notification.

Harper College will email you a Financial Aid Notification with information about your financial aid for the academic year.


Complete the Alternative Application

How to Complete the Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid

The Retention of Illinois Students & Equity (RISE) Act allows eligible undocumented students to apply for all forms of state financial aid. The Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid provides a way for these qualified students to apply for the Monetary Award Program (MAP), the state's largest need-based grant program for low-income college students.

For more information, go to  RISE Act and Alternative Application (ISAC) or apply at Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid.


Need Help with the FAFSA or Alternative Application?

Harper College offers FAFSA/Alternative Application Workshops, assistance in the One Stop and via an appointment


Last Updated: 5/15/24