Understanding Your Aid Offer & Next Steps You Need to Take

After you apply for financial aid and are admitted to DU, you'll receive an email when your financial aid offer is available for you to view through PioneerWeb. Use the following resources to help understand your offer and determine the next steps you need to take to secure your financial aid.

When to expect your financial aid offer:

In order to receive a financial aid offer, you must submit the FAFSA (and any other requested documentation) and be admitted to a DU program.

  • New students for summer or fall 2021: Aid offers are sent about two weeks after you complete the aid application process
  • Current students who plan to return in the 2021-22 academic year: We'll begin sending aid offers in mid-June.

We send aid offers on a weekly basis to students who recently submitted the FAFSA or were recently admitted to DU after the timelines listed above have passed. 

How to view your aid offer:

You'll receive an email once your financial aid offer is available to view online.

  1. Log into PioneerWeb.
    If this is your first time logging in, your password will be your six-digit birth date in the MMDDYY format.
  2. Go to the Student tab.
  3. Click on "View a PDF of Financial Aid Offer".


student studying

Understanding Your Financial Aid Offer

Your DU financial aid offer will include information about estimated costs, the types of aid offered to you, and what you can expect to pay out of pocket for the academic year. We do not assume all students will take classes in the summer, so unless otherwise listed, your initial offer may not include costs or aid for the summer quarter (a separate application for summer aid is available in the spring).

> View a sample aid offer

  • Estimated Total Cost of Attendance

    The estimated cost of attendance listed on your aid offer reflects the typical costs of a student enrolled in your graduate program for one academic year, and is broken down by direct and indirect costs. Direct costs are charges that are billed by DU, such as tuition and fees. Indirect costs are estimates for additional items including books, supplies, and personal expenses such as laundry, toiletries and clothes. You are not billed for indirect costs.

    > Learn more about costs

  • Grant, Scholarship and Waiver Eligibility

    This section of your aid offer will list any merit scholarships, grants, assistantships or waivers you were offered at the time of admission to DU. For graduate students, these types of aid are managed by individual academic departments (instead of the financial aid office).

    > Learn more about grants and scholarships

  • Student Loan Eligibility

    Most students are automatically offered at least one type of federal student loan. Loans are optional and are offered to you, which means you have to actively accept them if you'd like to borrow that additional funding. You can also choose to only borrow a portion of a loan offered to you, or not accept them at all. Remember that after you graduate, you'll have to repay any loan you borrowed during your time at DU. 

    > Learn more about student loans

  • Estimated Out-of-Pocket Direct Costs

    This section of your aid offer provides an estimate of the amount you will pay directly to DU for the academic year. The first estimate shows what your out-of-pocket cost might be after all of your scholarships and grants are applied, without borrowing any loans. The second line shows your estimated cost if you choose to borrow the full amount of loans offered to you. There are a number of options to help you manage this unmet cost.

    > Additional financing options

Next Steps to Receive Your Aid

Once you review your financial aid offer, there are additional steps you must take to receive your aid.

> PDF of the Checklist (for students starting in the summer of 2021)

> PDF of the Checklist (for most students starting the fall of 2021)

> PDF of the Checklist (for JD students starting the fall of 2021)

  • Accept/Decline Your Financial Aid

    In order to receive any type of aid, it must be accepted in PioneerWeb. To view and accept or decline each type of aid offered to you:

    1. Sign into PioneerWeb.
    2. Go to your Student tab.
    3. Click on Accept/Decline Financial Aid in the "Financial Aid Information" box.
    4. Select the appropriate aid year from the drop-down menu:
      • For students starting in the 2021 summer term, select the 2020-2021 Aid Year.
      • For students starting in the 2021 fall term, select the 2021-2022 Aid Year.
    5. Click on the Terms and Conditions tab, review and click "Accept."
    6. Click on the Accept Award Offer tab.
      1. Choose Accept or Decline in the drop-down menu next to each type of aid (most DU scholarships will already be accepted on your behalf).
      2. If you wish to only accept a portion of a loan, type that amount in the "Accept Partial Amount" box. Remember that any amount you accept will be split evenly over your terms of enrollment — i.e., fall, winter and spring quarters (or fall and spring semesters if you're a law student).
  • Apply for an Additional Loan

    If you need to apply for an additional loan to help cover your costs, options include applying for a Graduate Plus loan or a private education loan. Both types of loans are credit-based and are not guaranteed financing.

    Learn More

    JD students: A Graduate PLUS loan is automatically offered to you as a part of your initial financial aid offer. You may accept, decline, or accept a partial amount of that loan. Remember that this is not guaranteed financing, and you'll need to pass a credit check with the U.S. Department of Education if you accept it. We recommend borrowing federal student loans instead of a private education loan from a bank or credit union, but if you decide to borrow a private loan, we'll need to decrease or cancel the Graduate PLUS loan offered to you.

    Note for the 2021 fall term: If you apply (or have applied) for a Grad PLUS or private loan for the fall of 2021, we cannot begin certifying these loans until late mid-to-late July. This means that if you've been approved for a loan, it may not appear on your financial aid account until that time.

  • Sign Up for a Payment Plan

    DU offers our graduate students quarterly payment plans, as well as semester plans for law students. The application fee is $20 per quarter plan and $30 per semester plan.

    Visit the Bursar's Office to learn more.

  • Sign Up for Direct Deposit

    If your financial aid is more than the total of your charges, you'll receive a refund from the Bursar's Office. To expedite your refund, we recommend setting up direct deposit through PioneerWeb.

    1. Sign into PioneerWeb.
    2. Go to the Student tab.
    3. Click on the Direct Deposit Info link in the "My Statement / Payment" box.
    4. Select "Insert New."
    5. Enter bank account information. Please refer to a check to fill out the bank routing number and account number information.
    6. Check the Student Refund/Accounts Payable box.
    7. Save.

Additional Resources

For Graduate Students

These resources will help you understand your aid offer, estimate your bill and determine your next course of action. (Are you looking for resources for the 2020-2021 academic year? Head to the forms and resources page.)

For Law Students

Use these resources to ensure you're only borrowing what you need and taking the right steps to finance your law degree.



Financial Aid