Financial Aid

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Frequently Asked Questions

Our financial aid advisors can answer questions and help guide you through the financial aid process. Call us at 214-768-2058 or 1-800-323-0672 or email ugadmission@smu.edu.

How do I apply for academic scholarships?
Submit your application for admission by January 15. To be considered for the Hunt Leadership Scholarship, you also must submit an additional essay as outlined at smu.edu/hunt.

Who is eligible for academic scholarships and financial aid?
All applicants are considered automatically for academic scholarships. U.S. and dual citizens and permanent residents who submit the FAFSA and CSS/PROFILE® are considered for need-based financial aid. The FAFSA will be used to determine federal and state aid eligibility, such as Pell Grant, Federal Direct Loans and Work Study. The CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE® will be used to determine eligibility for SMU need based aid.

Will I have a financial aid advisor at SMU?
SMU assigns a financial aid advisor to each student.

When do I apply for financial aid?
Simply submit two forms by your chosen application deadline: November 1 for Early Decision I and Early action or January 15 for Early Decision II or Regular Decision.These are priority deadlines. Both forms will be available October 1, 2016.

1. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) 
for federal and state aid
U.S. and dual citizens and permanent residents seeking eligibility for federal and state sources of aid must submit the FAFSA each year.
Visit fafsa.ed.gov to file the FAFSA. Use SMU school code 003613. 

2. The CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE® 
for institutional aid
For SMU opportunity grants, you must submit a CSS/PROFILE financial application each year. This will give our financial aid advisors more information to further assess your financial need. There is a $25 cost for completing the CSS/PROFILE.
Visit student.collegeboard.org/profile to file the CSS/PROFILE. Use SMU school code 6660.

How does SMU determine the amount of financial assistance?
FAFSA and CSS/PROFILE® information is sent to SMU, which compares the cost of attending SMU with the family’s ability to contribute to the cost. The FAFSA will be used to determine federal and state aid eligibility, such as Pell Grant, Federal Direct Loans and Work Study. The CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE® will be used to determine eligibility for SMU need based aid.

When will I receive my award notification?
Most academic scholarships are awarded at the time of admission. For need-based awards, SMU must receive and review your FAFSA and CSS/PROFILE® before your awards can be determined.

What if I receive an off-campus scholarship?
Let your financial aid advisor know of any expected scholarships from outside sources. Receipt of off-campus funding might affect your financial aid package by first reducing any need-based loans and/or work-study.

How do I accept my financial aid awards?
Submit your enrollment deposit, and then go online to accept or decline any specific awards.