Simplification for a Streamlined Experience
The 2024-2025 FAFSA brings a breath of fresh air with a simpler format; most students will see the question count drop from 108 to just 46. The smart application will navigate your journey, skipping irrelevant sections based on your unique situation. Plus, the process of reporting income and tax details is now more straightforward, as we'll describe shortly.
Effortless Income and Tax Data Sharing
Gone are the days of manual entries or using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT). Starting with the 2024-2025 cycle, you'll use the IRS Direct Data Exchange (DDX) for a seamless transfer of your financial details to the FAFSA, or you'll simply confirm if you haven't filed taxes.
Unified Access with FSA ID
Every contributor to your FAFSA—whether it’s you, your spouse, your parents, or a stepparent—will need an FSA ID. This is a key step to ensure a unified and secure process for all involved, especially if taxes are filed separately.
Introducing the Student Aid Index (SAI)
The traditional Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) is being transformed into the Student Aid Index (SAI). It’s not just a new name—it’s a new system, which can even indicate a negative figure, bottoming out at -1500, to better reflect your aid eligibility.
Housing Assumptions for Financial Aid
UW-Stout is adapting to the FAFSA's shift away from housing plans. Our assumption is first and second-year students will embrace the campus living experience, while those in their third year and beyond will venture off-campus. This change is pivotal in customizing your financial aid package to suit your Stout journey.