Mapping Your Future: The Student Aid Report, why you need to review it

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The Student Aid Report, why you need to review it

By Beth Ziehmer

March 02, 2015

If you completed the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), you will receive a Student Aid Report, or SAR. You will receive it online or by paper, depending if you provided a valid e-mail address on your FAFSA.

The SAR contains important information about financial aid:

  • It summarizes the information you provided when you completed the FAFSA.
  • It includes your Expected Family Contribution (EFC), which colleges use to determine your financial aid package.
  • A four-digit Data Release Number (DRN), that your school will need if you allow them to change certain information on your FAFSA.

When will your SAR arrive?

You should receive your SAR (or notification that the SAR is available online) in:

  • three to five days if you completed the FAFSA online and signed it with a PIN,
  • two weeks if you completed the FAFSA online and mailed a signature page, or
  • three weeks if you mailed a paper FAFSA.

If you do not receive a SAR, check the status of your application by logging back into the website or calling the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (800-433-3243).

What to do:

  1. Review your SAR carefully.
  2. Provide additional information, if requested.
  3. If you find errors, follow the directions to correct the information.
  4. Keep a copy for your records.