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Academic Level: Students enrolled in the dual degree programs (combined bachelor's/master's) are considered for undergraduate financial aid until they earn at least 128 credits. After that, they are considered for graduate financial aid. For PROF career students (Pharmacy), the transition occurs after the student has earned at least 139 credits.

Academic Year: This is the period during which school is in session, consisting of two semesters totaling at least 30 weeks. The school year typically runs from the beginning of September through the end of May.

Adjusted Gross Income (AGI): All taxable income is included, less I.R.S. allowable adjustments. This figure appears on the income tax returns provided by the state and federal governments.

Aid Package: See Financial Aid Package.

Award Letter: See Financial Aid Award Letter.


Base Year: The base year is the tax year prior to the academic year (award year) for which financial aid is requested. For example, when completing the 2010-2011 FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA, the tax year 2009 information must be provided.

Budget: See Cost of Attendance (COA).

Bursar's Office: This office in most universities is responsible for the billing and the collection of tuition and fees revenue and other related charges.


Consortium Agreements: A contract between two schools that recognize the registration of a student at each one for financial aid purposes, and specifies that only one of the schools will administer Title IV financial aid for the student.

Cost of Attendance (COA): Every college develops a cost-of-attendance budget for students that includes, for the traditional academic year, anticipated tuition and fees, room, board, books and supplies, transportation and personal expenses.

Custodial Parent: When a student's parents are divorced or separated, the custodial parent is the parent that the student lived with the most during the past 12 months.


Dependents: For financial aid purposes, a dependent is a child or a person for whom more than half support is provided for by another person. This child or other person may be claimed on the federal income tax return, or listed as a dependent for non-taxable benefits, etc.


Eligible Non-Citizen: This status is for a person who is not a U.S. citizen but is eligible for federal student aid because he/she is a permanent resident of the U.S., or holds refugee or asylum status. Non-citizens who hold student visas or exchange visitor visas are not eligible for federal student aid.


Enrollment Status: This status is based upon the student's full-time (12 credits or more per term) or part-time (6 – 11 credits per term) enrollment. Most financial aid programs require at least part-time enrollment status.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC): The amount a family is expected to contribute to a student's education, as calculated by the federal government's needs analysis system, based on information provided on the FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA. The EFC is calculated based on family earnings, net assets, savings, size of family and number of students in college.


FAFSA on the Web: The electronic Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as developed by the U.S. Department of Education, which helps students apply for financial aid using the Internet.

Federal Methodology (FM): The need-analysis formula mandated by federal law and used to determine a family's Expected Family Contribution (EFC).

Federal Processor: The agency that is appointed by the federal government to process the FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA and generate Student Aid Reports (SAR) to students is referred to as the federal processor.

Financial Aid: All forms of financial assistance available to college students to help meet their costs of attendance. Financial aid includes scholarships, grants, fellowships, assistantships, tuition waivers, employment opportunities and loans.

Financial Aid Administrator (FAA): college or university employee who is involved in the administration of financial aid is generally the “Financial Aid Administrator,” although some schools refer to them as “Financial Aid Advisors” or “Financial Aid Counselors.”

Financial Aid Appeal: This is a petition made by a student and/or family to adjust income or asset information on the FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA. It also may include requests to be considered as an independent student, to have a cost of education budget adjusted, or to exclude income from an absent parent. Approval of the financial aid appeal is based on the professional judgment of the financial aid counselor and the dean.

Financial Aid Award Letter: This letter is issued by the Office of Student Financial Services and contains an offer of financial assistance to a student attending college. It contains an estimate of the cost of education for the student, as well as the financial aid available to assist the student.

Financial Aid Package: The combination of all the financial aid programs (scholarships, grants, loans and/or work study) made available to a student from the state and federal government and from a university.

Financial Need: The financial need is the difference between the Estimated Cost of Attendance at a college and the Expected Family Contribution as determined from the FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA): This is the application that must be completed by students and parents applying for Federal Title IV student financial aid. This is the need-analysis form utilized to apply for federal student aid.

Full-time Student: An enrolled student who has registered for 12 credits or more in a semester is generally considered a full-time student for financial aid purposes.


Grade-Point Average (GPA): The GPA is a numeric average of a student's grades, where letter grades are converted to a 4.0 scale. A grade of A is equal to a 4.0 grade-point average, a B to a 3.0, etc.

Gross Income: The income amount before taxes, deductions and allowances have been subtracted.


Half-time Student: An enrolled student who has registered for 6 - 8 credits per term is considered half time for financial aid purposes.


Income: The amount of money received from employment (salary, wages, tips), profit from financial instruments (interest, dividends, capital gains), or other sources (TANF, disability, child support, Social Security and pensions).

Independent Student: Students who are either 24 years of age or older, orphans, wards of court, veterans of the U.S. Armed Services, graduate students, married, have a legal dependent(s), or have been declared emancipated by a federal, state, or city agency. For federal financial aid purposes, there will be no expected parent financial contribution towards this student's cost of education.

Institutional Student Information Report (ISIR): The electronic record of the Student Aid Report (SAR), this is provided by the federal government to colleges based on the student's FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA.


LIU Student EMPLID: The ID number assigned to all Hudson Graduate Center students as their major means of accessing their records.


My LIU: Students are able to see their personalized information on their My LIU account. This portal contains the admissions, registration, financial aid and financials information for all Long Island University students.


Need Analysis: Technique used to determine a student's need for financial assistance for college expenses. The analysis determines the family's ability to contribute to the student's cost of attendance.

Need-Based Financial Aid: This includes the types of financial aid that rely upon financial need as the determining factor. Financial need is considered to be the total cost minus the expected family contribution, as determined by Congress.

Net Income: This is income after which taxes, deductions and allowances have been subtracted.

Non-Need Based Financial Aid: Financial aid that does not require financial need as a criterion for eligibility. For example, the Federal Direct (unsubsidized) and PLUS Loan Programs.


Period of Enrollment: The period for which financial aid is offered as determined by the school is the period of enrollment. A period of enrollment coincides with an academic term such as the academic year or the semester and starts on the day classes begin.

PIN Number: This is a personal identification number that serves as an identifier for access to personal information in various U.S. Department of Education systems. It's like the personal identification number used in banks that enables access to accounts. A PIN number serves as the electronic signature, and should not be revealed to anyone.

Professional Judgment: The action taken by a financial aid administrator after reviewing a case for special circumstances is based on professional judgment.


Renewal Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA): The renewal financial aid application mailed to students who filed the FAFSA during the previous academic year. The renewal FAFSA is preprinted with information from the previous year’s FAFSA application, allowing students to update or change this information for the coming academic year. The renewal FAFSA serves the same purpose as the FAFSA.


Satisfactory Academic Progress: Students must demonstrate that they are making progress towards their degree objective and this eligibility requirement looks at the number of credits the student has completed in a year, his/her grade-point average, total cumulative credits and the number of years he/she has been receiving financial aid. In order for students to continue to receive federal student aid, they must meet the minimum standards set by the University and by the federal government.

Scholarships: Generally based on academic achievement, this form of financial aid also helps meet the student's cost of education. Similar to other grants, repayment is not required and scholarships may be awarded based upon any number of criteria, such as academics or demonstrated talent or skills.

Selective Service: Male students who are U.S. citizens, and have reached the age of 18, must be registered with the Selective Service (draft) to be eligible for federal financial aid.

Semester: This is a period of time in which the educational program takes place – generally two semesters that are 15 weeks in length, make up the academic year.

SEOG: See Federal SEOG

SSN: Social Security Number

Student Aid Report (SAR): A federal output document, a SAR, is sent to a student by the federal processor as a result of the FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA. The SAR contains financial and other information reported by the student and contains an Expected Family Contribution (EFC)


Title IV: A section of the Higher Education Act of 1965, which authorizes federal loan, work and grant financial assistance programs.

Title IV School Code: A unique code used on the FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA to identify each school. Long Island University's school code is 002751.

Transfer Student: A transfer student is one who attended and earned credit at one school, then transfers to another school to finish his/her degree.

Tuition Assistance Program (TAP): A New York State grants program for New York residents, and U.S. permanent residents, attending an approved post-secondary institution on a full-time (12 credits or more) basis.


U.S. Department of Education (ED, DOE, USED, DE): This is the government agency that administers several federal student financial aid programs, including the Federal Pell Grant, the Federal SEOG Grant, the Federal Work-Study/America Reads and Counts Program, the Federal Perkins Loan and the Federal Direct Student Loan Program.


V.A.: Veterans Administration

Verification: The required process (by federal regulation) by which a Financial Aid Office at a college or university requests additional documentation of a family's financial status is called verification.

Verification Supplement or Worksheet: A form used to assist students with the verification process, which requires parents and students to validate the information they provided when completing their FAFSA or Renewal FAFSA.