Invest in Your Future

Financial aid can make a high-quality education possible for anyone.

You know you want to be a Longhorn, but you’re concerned about the cost of a college education. It’s time to explore financial aid options.

Financial aid can help Longhorns with all kinds of college expenses, such as tuition, books, housing, transportation and study abroad. If you want to be considered to receive financial assistance to fund your education, the first step you can take is applying for financial aid.

One important application to fill out is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Even if you aren’t sure you’ll qualify to receive aid, you should complete a FAFSA, which is a short form you fill out once for each year you’ll be enrolled in college to report information about your family’s finances. That information is used to calculate your Expected Family Contribution (EFC), which will be sent to The University of Texas at Austin along with your FAFSA. When you are admitted, the UT Austin Office of Financial Aid will subtract your EFC from the estimated Cost of Attendance (COA) for that year to determine your financial need. They will use that number with other information from your FAFSA to create a financial aid package to offer you.

The FAFSA takes about 30 minutes to complete, and you can gather the materials you’ll need ahead of time to make it go even faster. Non-U.S. citizens who qualify for Texas residency can complete the paper FAFSA or the Texas Application for State Financial Aid (TASFA)—no need to fill out both. International students should consult the International Office to learn about their financial aid options.

Completing the FAFSA means you’ll be able to be considered for financial aid like grants, work-study and student loans. Grants are funds awarded based on financial need and don’t have to be repaid. Work-study offers the chance to get a special part-time job, usually on campus, while you’re enrolled. Loans have to be repaid, but most have the option to wait until after you graduate to develop a manageable payment plan.

You should also complete the ApplyTexas scholarship section to maximize your potential to receive financial aid. Scholarships are another type of monetary award that doesn’t have to be repaid. Some are based on financial need, but there are also merit scholarships that recognize achievements like academic excellence or contributions to society. The ApplyTexas scholarship section will put you in the running for most scholarships administered by the UT Austin Office of Financial Aid, as well as some that are awarded by colleges and schools within the university. Once you complete the admission section of ApplyTexas, you can fill out the scholarship section and submit it at the same time or separately, as long as you submit it by Dec. 1.

After you’ve filled out the FAFSA and ApplyTexas, why stop there? Many scholarships come from sources outside the university—you just have to look for them and apply. The Texas Exes offer a variety of UT Austin scholarships, and you only have to fill out one online application. You could also search the College Board’s extensive database, or check out the Minnie Stevens Piper Compendium’s scholarship index. You may even find opportunities specific to your demographic information, such as your hometown or region, religion, race, gender or sexual orientation.

Money doesn’t have to be a barrier to enrolling at UT Austin. Financial aid can help ease that burden so you can focus on your education. And because UT Austin is consistently ranked as a best-value college, you can rest assured that your degree will be an investment that will reward you for a lifetime.