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Financial Aid Checklist

Review the Steps

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Complete the FAFSA

Complete the FAFSA

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Application Process

Students applying for financial assistance for the Fall, Spring or Summer academic terms must submit the following documents:

  • A Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to the U.S. Department of Education. A student need not be admitted to a university to apply for aid but must be admitted to receive a financial aid notification/award letter.
  • Other documentation as requested to verify Financial Aid eligibility.

To qualify for financial aid a student must:

  • be admitted and enrolled as a degree-seeking student
  • be enrolled at least half-time (6 hrs. undergraduate or 4 hrs. graduate) (for Federal Direct Student Loans)
  • maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP)
  • be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • be registered with Selective Service, if required
  • have no outstanding debts involving financial aid previously received at Old Dominion University or any other post-secondary institution
  • not be in default on any post-secondary educational loan

Students who wish to be considered for federal, state, or need-based institutional aid must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), to the U.S. Department of Education. You can start filling out the FAFSA on October 1st.

The results of your need analysis will be returned directly to you in the form of a Student Aid Report (SAR). Please allow 4 weeks from the date you mail the FAFSA to receive the SAR. Students who apply electronically will receive electronic SARS.

A student's financial need is determined based on a standard equation: Cost of Attendance - Expected Family (and/or Student) Contribution = Financial Need

If the expected family contribution is less than the cost of attendance, the Old Dominion University Office of Student Financial Aid will attempt to meet the difference with a combination of need-based aid. This process is called packaging, and a student's aid is packaged on a first come-first served basis. Students are encouraged to view the status of their aid via their secure myODU accounts.

This is an easy and secure way for student and parent to access and transfer return information directly into the FAFSA.

Notification & Acceptance of Offer

Admitted students will be sent notifications from Old Dominion University of their eligibility for aid to their ODU email account once the aid offer is available for viewing and accepting. The student must accept or decline the aid as offered via online within 10 days of the date of the notification or by May 1, whichever date is latter. Notification of changes to your initial award offer will be sent via email.

How to View & Accept Your Financial Aid Award Offer

Financial Aid Self-Service Overview

Award Adjustment

Your financial aid award may be adjusted. Initial financial aid awards are based on full time (12+ credits for undergraduates and 9+ credits for graduates) cost of attendance and available resources. Adjustments may be necessary if:

  • you withdraw.
  • you change course loads.
  • you enroll less than full-time.
  • you drop below full-time.
  • you receive additional financial aid, including tuition waivers, scholarships, graduate tuition unfunded scholarships, veterans' benefits, etc.
  • your tuition rate changes (out-of-state to in-state).
  • your admission status changes (undergraduate to graduate)
  • any changes are made to your Student Aid Report.
  • you fail to earn a passing grade for the term.


Funds are first applied ("disbursed") to a student's account to pay University charges. If a student's charges exceed the aid disbursed, the student is responsible for paying the balance due by the published tuition deadline. If a student is registered, aid which the student has accepted (with the exception of Federal Work Study) will be credited automatically to his or her account provided certain conditions are met. Additional documents are required for Federal Direct Loans. Federal Work Study (FWS) funds are not automatically applied to the student account. Funds must be earned through employment in an eligible FWS position within the university. Federal Work-Study earnings are paid directly to the student through the payroll office.

A student with financial aid credit balance will receive a refund from the Office of Finance. For additional information about refund policy, balance of aid and e-Refunds, please visit the Office of Finance.

Federal Regulation 668.00, titled Student Assistance General Provisions Final Regulation, Section 58, requires that all student financial aid and enrollment information be accurate, and warrant the approved level of financial aid awarded. Grant and scholarship aid in excess of tuition, fees, books and required supplies must be reported on your federal income tax return.

Student Employment

Federal Regulations require that all students working on campus provide employment eligibility documentation before they begin working. Examples of acceptable documentation are U.S. passport, certificate of citizenship or naturalization, alien registration card, driver's license and original social security card, or birth certificate. Contact Career Development Services for clarification.

Summer Financial Aid

Explore Summer Financial Aid options, including loans, scholarships, tuition waivers, contracts, military benefits, vocational rehab benefits, and more.

Watch these videos for more information on the FAFSA

FAFSA Overview

Dependency Status

FAFSA: What Happens Next