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At the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, we understand that the cost of education is an important concern that students and parents have. UW Oshkosh offers quality, affordable degree programs and financial aid services to help you meet the costs of education. The Financial Aid Office provides financial assistance in the forms of grants, loans, scholarships and work-study.

Our knowledgable staff is available to help you and your student understand the financial aid process and answers any questions you may have.

As the Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) limits the amount of information we can provide parents, we urge you to keep the lines of communication open with your student.

Frequently Asked Questions


What forms are needed to apply for Financial Aid and is there a deadline?
  • All students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Respond to all requests from the Financial Aid Office in a timely manner
  • There is no deadline to apply for aid. However, keep in mind that tuition is due at the beginning of each semester. If your student wants aid, all processing and forms must be completed approximately two or three weeks prior to the beginning of the term. Note: Federal Regulations requires that all aid offered to students must be accepted before the last day of classes or we will be unable to process it
How often does the student need to apply and when should they start the process?

Students must reapply for financial aid each school year. This includes filing the federal form (FAFSA) and submitting requested documents to the Financial Aid Office. The process can be started as soon as October 1 for the next school year. It is recommended to complete your federal tax return prior to completing the FAFSA.

What if we have questions about the tuition bill?

Tuition bills are produced by the Student Accounts Office at the beginning of each semester. The bill will most likely not reflect the financial aid credits. The most up-to-date information is available on your student’s TitanWeb account. If you have questions regarding specific tuition charges, the availability of bills, or refunds, contact the Student Accounts Office at (920) 424-1332.

When is Financial Aid available to students?

Funds are disbursed to a student’s account in the week before the start of classes each term. Once aid is disbursed to the account, it will pay of any direct charges. Tuition and room and board (if living on campus) are paid each term. Any excess will be refunded to the student (either by Direct Deposit or a paper check claimed at the Cashier’s Office) to be used for other educational expenses such as books, rent, food, etc. The student is able to sign up for Direct Deposit on TitanWeb.

How do we pay for housing if we want to use Financial Aid?

For a student living on campus, the room and board charges are added to the student account. Any financial aid funs received will be applied to the student’s account through the Student Accounts Office; if tuition, room and board is fully covered by the funds and there is an excess, the refund is released to the student. The student is then expected to use these funds to pay for other education related expenses, such as book, supplies, etc.

For a student living off campus, their housing charges are not added to their student account. Any financial aid funds received will be applied to the student’s tuition through the Student Accounts Office; if tuition is fully covered by the funds and there is an excess, the refund is released to the student. The student is then expected to use these funds to pay for other expenses, such as housing, books, supplies, etc.

How will you notify my student of his/her award?

Most students will receive an email in TitanMail with directions on how to access their awards online to accept or decline them. A student’s TitanMail account is established as soon as he/she pays the initial deposit through the Admissions Office. For assistance accessing email, contact the Help Desk at (920) 424-3020. If they want a paper copy of the award notification, they are able to print their award on TitanWeb.

What are the total costs?

Financial Aid is awarded based on an estimated cost of attendance for the year. The cost of attendance includes not only tuition and room and board, but also other estimated expenses a student might incur. You can view available tuition rates on the Student Accounts website. You can also view the estimated cost of attendance information on the Financial Aid site.

In a divorced/separated family, which parent should file the forms?

The FAFSA states:

  • If the student’s parents are married, answer the questions about both parents.
  • If the student’s parent is widowed or single, answer only the questions about that parent
  • If the student’s parents have divorced or separated, answer only the questions about the parent that the student lived with most during the last 12 months. If they did not live with one parent more than the other, answer only the questions about the parent who provided most of the student’s financial support during the last 12 months or during the most recent year that the student actually received support from a parent.
  • If the student’s parent has remarried after being widowed or divorced, answer the questions about both parent and stepparent.
  • If the student has a legal guardian, they cannot use the legal guardian’s information on the application. A legal guardian is not considered a parent in the financial aid process.
  • If the student has foster parents, they cannot use the foster parent’s information on the application. A foster parent is not considered a parent in the financial aid process.
  • If the student was adopted, follow the instruction above for parents, based on their current marital status.

Note: The following people are not considered parents on this form unless they have legally adopted the student: grandparents, foster parents, legal guardians, older brothers or sisters and uncles or aunts.

What if our family circumstances change after we file the Financial Aid forms?

You may request review for reconsideration of the student’s aid eligibility. The review process is usually successful only if a family’s income or expense information changes significantly from the information originally submitted for the school year. Changes to the financial aid package are not guaranteed as a part of the review process. To request a review, contact your student’s financial aid counselor.

What about scholarships?

The FAFSA process does not award scholarships, however scholarship sponsors may use the FAFSA as part of their criteria. Scholarships are not usually based on financial need and there is not one basic application used to apply for all of them. Scholarships are based on a student’s academic achievement and come from many different sources. The University offers a number of scholarships each year to incoming first-year students. These scholarships are generally based upon high school academic performance. More information can be found on the Admissions website. Or more information about these scholarships, visit our scholarships page.

Are there jobs available for students who want to work?

The University and surrounding community offer many jobs for students. Most students can still do well academically while working 8-10 hours/week. Students who are offered federal work study in their financial aid award can apply for work-study designated positions; students who have not applied for federal aid or were not offered federal work-study can still apply for jobs on campus as a student assistant. Information on current jobs can be found on the Career & Professional Development Handshake


My student will need additional funds beyond the Financial Aid offered. Where should we look?

Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) (must be awarded through the FAFSA process)

  • You can get information on this loan and start the process here. If you are denied the PLUS because of the mandatory credit check by your lender, your student will be able to borrow some additional funding through the Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loan program. The Financial Aid Office will receive a copy of the denial. The student will then be offered an Unsubsidized Stafford Loan.

Alternative Loans

  • You can get information on this loan and the start process here. These are non-federal loans offered by private agencies so the costs associated with them tend to be higher than with federal loans.
When can my student be considered independent for aid purposes?

All applicants for federal student aid are considered either “independent” or “dependent.” Dependent students are required to include information about their parents on the FAFSA. By answering a few questions, you can get a good idea of which category you fit into.

  • Will you be 24 or older by Dec. 31 of the school year for which are apply for Financial Aid?
  • Will you be working toward a master’s or doctorate degree (such as M.A., M.B.A., M.D., J.D., Ph.D., Ed.D., etc.)?
  • Are you married or separated but not divorced?
  • Do you have children who receive more than half of their support from you?
  • Do you have dependents (other than children or a spouse) who live with you and receive more than half of their support from you?
  • At any time since you turned age 13, were both of your parents deceased, were you in foster care or were you a ward or dependent of the court?
  • Are you an emancipated minor or are you in a legal guardianship as determined by a court?
  • Are you an unaccompanied youth who is homeless or self-supported and at risk of being homeless?
  • Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?
  • Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?

If none of the criteria listed above apply to you, you may be considered a dependent student and may be required to provide your parents’ financial information when completing the FAFSA. If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you may be an independent student. You may not be required to provide parental information on your FAFSA.