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How to Apply for Financial Aid

Important Information

Every student and parent needs to create an FSA ID and password.

Every student must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at

Important Dates and Information

BSU’s priority deadline for the FAFSA application is May 1, 2024. You must complete the FAFSA each year if you want to be considered for federal and state financial aid. Students may apply after the priority date; however, aid will be awarded on a funds-available basis. 

Freshmen/Upperclassmen: When completing the FAFSA, be sure to list Bridgewater State University as a college to receive your application. Sometimes, your application might need to be federally verified. This means the Financial Aid Office will be in touch with you about what is needed. Be sure to respond to these requests to ensure your eligibility for all aid available to you.

Graduate Students: If you are a graduate student receiving a graduate assistantship or any allowance for tuition, fees, room or board, you are legally obligated to report the allowance to the Financial Aid Office. Graduate students are eligible for student loans only.

Financial Aid Deadlines

How to Fill out the FAFSA Form

There are 7 steps required to fill out the FAFSA Form for BSU. A summary of the process has been detailed below, but be sure to visit the Federal Student Aid website for the more information. Para más información en español:

BSU Financial Aid Forms & Brochures


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Create an account
Every BSU student should create a FSA ID before filling out the FAFSA Form for the first time. If you are a dependent student, one of your parents whose information you reported on your application will also need to create an FSA ID in order to sign your application electronically. If your parent does not have a Social Security Number (SSN) you will need to select the option to print out the signature page at the end of the FAFSA Form instead.

Gather documents needed to apply
You will need several documents in order to accurately fill out your FAFSA Form, depending on your circumstances. These can include, but are not limited to, any of the following:

  • Your Social Security Number and your parents' Social Security Numbers, if you are a dependent student
  • Your driver's license, if you have one
  • If you are not a US Citizen, your Alien Registration Number
  • Tax documents, including Federal tax information, tax documents, tax returns, and IRS forms such as W-2 information and Form 1040 or 1040-NR (if you are a dependent student)
  • Records of untaxed income such as child support, interest income and veterans noneducation benefits.
  • Information on cash, savings/checking accounts, investments; including stocks, bonds, and real estate (not including the house you live in), and business/farm assets if applicable

Start the FAFSA Form and provide basic personal information
Begin filling out the FAFSA Form as soon as it is available, usually on October 1st. You have three options to fill out your FAFSA Form:

List Bridgewater State University on your FAFSA Form
While completing the FAFSA form, you must list at least one school to receive your information. You can include BSU on your FAFSA using Federal School Code 002183-00. Please note that in Massachusetts Grant Aid Awards will be made for the first eligible college on your FAFSA Form, however, this can be changed if necessary.

Determine dependency status and list parents' information if necessary
The FAFSA Form asks several questions to determine whether or not you are a dependent student. If you are a determined to be a dependent student, you will be asked to provide your parents information, as well as your own. For more information on this process, please see the Dependency Status Page.

Provide financial information to FAFSA
Using the documents  you gathered earlier, provide FAFSA with any relevant financial information requested, including information from tax forms and the balances of savings or checking accounts.

Sign and submit your FAFSA Form
Once complete, you'll need to sign and submit your FAFSA Form so the application can be processed. If you are a dependent student, your parents will need to sign the application as well. If you are, for any reason, unable to sign the form using your FSA ID, you will have the option to print out and mail a signature page instead.

What Happens Next?

Once you've submitted your FAFSA Form you should check the status of your application. If you filled out the form online, you should be able to check the status immediately, but if you filled out a paper form, you may not be able to check the application's status until it has been processed. (Usually 7-10 days from date mailed.) You may need to provide additional verification. If so, BSU will request additional documentation to support the information you provided.

Students can check their status online by visiting and signing in with the username and password they selected when creating their account. Once signed in, your FAFSA may have one of the following four statuses:

  • Processing: Your application is still in process: this usually takes between 3-5 business days to happen, plus an additional business day for your application to be made available to BSU.
  • Processed Successfully: Your application has been processed and no further action is needed on your part.
  • Missing Signatures: You're missing some required signatures on your application.
  • Action Required: Your application requires further action: if this happens and you are a BSU student, you should contact our Financial Aid Office for further assitance.

For more information please see Federal Student Aid's "After the FAFSA" page.


(To change closed captioning language on the videos, click on Settings, Subtitles/CC, Auto-translate, and choose the appropriate language.)