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Application Process

While the financial aid application process can sometimes seem intimidating, we'll provide you with the resources and guidance you need to complete every step of the way.

Steps to Apply

  1. Create a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID: Students will sign up for a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID, which will be used every year on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and for Master Promissory Notes (MPNs) for federal student loans.

    Create a New FSA ID
  2. Complete the FAFSA: The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is used to determine eligibility for federal financial aid and is required if you wish to tap into federal student loans. DU's school code for the FAFSA is 001371. 

    Submit the FAFSA
  3. Submit Supporting Documentation: We sometimes need to ask for additional documentation in order to verify that the information on your application is accurate. If we need further information, we'll send you an email. You must submit all requested documents before we can finalize your financial aid award. Outstanding requirements can also be viewed on the Student tab of PioneerWeb.


Priority Deadlines

  • Incoming students applying for fall admission: January 15
  • Incoming students applying for winter, spring or summer admission: no priority deadline — apply as soon as possible
  • Returning students: March 15

Why apply by the priority deadline?

For new students, applying by the priority deadline means that if you're admitted to DU, you'll receive your award letter in mid-February (or soon after you're admitted, whichever comes later). For continuing students, it means you can expect to receive your award letter in late May or early June. If you miss the priority deadline, you'll decrease your chances of receiving sought-after financial aid awards such as work-study, which draw from a limited pool of funding. You should still apply as soon as possible to get your award letter!

Using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool allows students to transfer tax return information directly into their FAFSA and makes completing the application much easier. Review our Guide to Using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool for step-by-step instructions.

Learn more


If you have been selected for verification by the U.S. Department of Education, we must collect further documentation before we can offer you a financial aid award. We'll notify you via email if we need additional information.

Learn More

When to Expect Your Award Letter

Once you have completed the requirements to apply for aid, we will send you a financial aid award letter via email. We'll start sending 2019-20 financial aid award letters to new admitted students in mid-February. We'll continue to send award letters on a weekly basis to students who were recently admitted and submitted the FAFSA. If you're a returning student, you can expect to receive it in early June for the 2019-20 academic year.

Frequently Asked Questions



Financial Aid