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Do I need to submit FAFSA or other info for need-based financial aid?


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I have applied to a bunch of econ PhD programs in the 1-35 range and a couple masters programs. I would like to be considered for need-based financial aid if that exists. Does such aid exist? Should I be submitting FAFSA or some other forms to apply for this? Or is all aid merit-based and such that I will be automatically considered given my regular application to the school?
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PhD programs fund graduate students in two ways.

 

1. They give full tuition waivers and a stipend ($1600-$2000 a month) - called "full funding"

2. They give full or partial tuition waivers with no stipend - "some funding"

 

About 75-90% of students who actually attend PhD programs are awarded an offer of admission with "full funding."

 

Federal loans (which require the FAFSA) are completely separate from this kind of "funding." You can borrow (US citizens and green card holders) if the stipend doesn't cover your cost of living.

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PhD programs fund graduate students in two ways.

 

1. They give full tuition waivers and a stipend ($1600-$2000 a month) - called "full funding"

2. They give full or partial tuition waivers with no stipend - "some funding"

 

About 75-90% of students who actually attend PhD programs are awarded an offer of admission with "full funding."

 

Federal loans (which require the FAFSA) are completely separate from this kind of "funding." You can borrow (US citizens and green card holders) if the stipend doesn't cover your cost of living.

 

In applying to some programs, I notice that they say that their stipend is need-based. Some applications even ask if you are capable of funding yourself. To demonstrate this "need base," would it be wise to fill out FAFSA even if you aren't intending on taking out loans? I know some programs flat out say that if you gain entrance to the program you get a stipend, but some of them weren't as clear.

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PhD programs fund graduate students in two ways.

 

1. They give full tuition waivers and a stipend ($1600-$2000 a month) - called "full funding"

2. They give full or partial tuition waivers with no stipend - "some funding"

 

About 75-90% of students who actually attend PhD programs are awarded an offer of admission with "full funding."

 

Federal loans (which require the FAFSA) are completely separate from this kind of "funding." You can borrow (US citizens and green card holders) if the stipend doesn't cover your cost of living.

 

Mostly what tm_member says, but

(1) Note that some schools may require the FAFSA.

(2) The upper end of stipends in economics is more like $3,000 a month--but ones that high are unusual.

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It is pretty low cost to fill out. I would do it if you are worried at all.

 

Anecdotally, I am fairly well funded and qualify for about $20k in student loans every year. I don't understand why they would give me that much, but having the option is nice. I used it to refinance some existing loans at a lower rate during my first year. I also apply for outside scholarships (and have gotten some) that require FAFSA.

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In applying to some programs, I notice that they say that their stipend is need-based. Some applications even ask if you are capable of funding yourself. To demonstrate this "need base," would it be wise to fill out FAFSA even if you aren't intending on taking out loans? I know some programs flat out say that if you gain entrance to the program you get a stipend, but some of them weren't as clear.

 

I have never seen or heard of a school giving need-based funding for a PhD program. Can you show me an example?

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I have never seen or heard of a school giving need-based funding for a PhD program. Can you show me an example?

 

Sometimes this is a requirement of the graduate school, even if it doesn't make sense for a particular department. Also, sometimes grad students choose to take out loans that require the FAFSA.

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