How to Apply for Prospective Students
How to Apply for Financial Aid
All students should follow the steps below to apply for financial assistance. International students, please note Step 5 for an additional option to apply.
Indicate on the Carleton Application for Admission that you intend to apply for financial aid. There is no separate Carleton form to apply for financial aid.
Set up and maintain your own personal financial aid file. Make and keep copies of all forms, information, and communications with Carleton and any other agencies. If something becomes lost in the mail or misplaced, you will have the information available to resubmit easily.
Complete the College Board/College Scholarship Service's (CSS) Financial Aid Profile Form for School Year 2013-2014. The Profile Student Guide should be available in your high school guidance office. You may complete the Profile online here. Be sure to list Carleton College, code 6081, on the Profile so we receive the results.
If a student's biological or adoptive parents are separated, divorced or were never married, the custodial parent, or the parent with whom the student lives most of the time, should complete both the Profile and FAFSA. The non-custodial parent should complete the College Board's Non-custodial Profile. The College Board will send the student an email that details the requirement. The student will be directed to share the email with the non-custodial parent. Carleton assumes the noncustodial parent will contribute toward a student's college costs to the extent that is reasonable.
Parents who are self-employed or own a business or farm may be requested to complete the College Board's Business/Farm Supplement by downloading and printing the PDF and submit it directly to Carleton. The Student Financial Services Office will contact you if this additional form is needed.
- Fall Early Decision candidates should complete and submit the Profile by November 15, 2012 using actual 2011 income figures or estimated 2012 income figures.
- Winter Early Decision candidates should complete and submit the Profile by January 15, 2013 using actual 2011 income figures or estimated 2012 income figures.
- Regular Decision candidates should complete and submit the Profile by February 15, 2013. Regular Decision candidates may use estimated amount for 2012 income and taxes when completing the Profile. We encourage you to use estimated figures if you and your parents cannot complete your 2012 federal IRS income tax return(s) by early February. Ideally, families will complete 2012 federal tax returns early and submit actual figures.
- Transfer candidates should complete and submit the Profile by March 31, 2013.
After you submit your Profile Application, you can access your Profile Acknowledgement at the College Board website at any time. The Acknowledgement is your record of the data submitted on the Profile and where the results are being sent. Carleton recommends printing your Acknowledgement and keeping it in your personal financial aid file (see Step 2).
If you need to change any of your Profile Application information, you will make corrections on your Acknowledgement and send a photocopy directly to Carleton. Do NOT send corrections to the College Board; they will not process your corrections.
If you have questions or problems with the PROFILE, you can reach College Board at 305-829-9793 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
NOTE: International students may skip to Step 5.
Complete the Free application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA cannot be submitted until after January 1 of the year you will be entering college. Actual federal tax return figures should be used with the FAFSA. You can apply online with FAFSA on the Web or contact your high school guidance office for a paper FAFSA (late December or early January).
Applying online is the fastest and easiest way to apply. You and your parent can also sign your application electronically with U.S. Department of Education Personal Identification Numbers (PINs). Students and parents should apply for their individual PINs before beginning FAFSA on the Web
The FAFSA is a required document used to determine a student’s eligibility for federal aid, such as Pell grants, Direct Stafford or Perkins loans, student employment, etc. Complete and file only one FAFSA, although the results may be sent to several schools. Make sure you list Carleton College and its Federal School Code: 002340.
The student should receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) electronically or in the mail within 1-3 weeks after submission of the FAFSA. If the FAFSA was filed using estimated figures, follow the instructions on the SAR to make corrections. If actual IRS figures were used, check the SAR to make sure there are no errors. If you listed Carleton on the FAFSA, we will receive the results electronically. Retain the correct SAR for your records. Should we need a copy, we will request it. If the SAR has not been received within four weeks, call 800-4FEDAID (800-433-3243).
(International Students only)
International students are also required to complete the College Board/College Scholarship Service's (CSS) Financial Aid Profile Form for the 2013-2014 school year. You may complete the Profile online here. Be sure to list Carleton College, code 6081, on the Profile so we receive the results. International students must also complete and submit the Certification of Finances. Please print the certification. Once it is completed, you can email, fax or mail it to the Student Financial Services office.
In the event an international student cannot complete the online CSS/Profile, they can complete the free International Student Financial Aid Application instead of completing the CSS/Profile. No matter which option is chosen, all international students must complete the Certification of Finances form and send it directly to Carleton College.
Important Note for International Students: Financial assistance is secured at the time of your entry to Carleton. Given the limited funding available to international students, we will NOT consider new applications for aid once you have enrolled. You should make your plans for attendance at Carleton with the financial aid you have been awarded for your first year. International students awarded assistance can assume that level of aid will continue during the four years at Carleton. However, you should not assume that increased aid will be available in subsequent years. With this in mind, aid applications after the first year are not required. But, the Certification of Finances is required each year to renew your visa status.
New students are normally notified of an initial financial aid decision at the time they are offered admission for Carleton if the appropriate forms, as outlined above, are on file prior to the mailing of the admissions decision. The student is responsible for completing and submitting all forms and documents to apply for financial assistance. This includes meeting the required deadlines and responding to requests for additional documentation. Carleton reserves the right to request copies of tax returns directly from the IRS. All financial aid awards are made for one year only.
Awards are finalized in July once students have made their enrollment deposit and income figures are verified with actual tax returns. Significant discrepancies may cause a change to the initial award. However, in most cases, the final award will be the same as the initial award.
Outside scholarships (assistance from sources other than Carleton) must be reported to the Director of Student Financial Services. Since financial need is determined by considering all sources of assistance, outside awards must be reviewed even after the initial aid award has been issued. It is the College's policy to remain within a student's calculated need and allow outside awards to lower the self-help (loan or work) portion of the aid award.
Renewal of Aid:
Financial aid forms must be completed each year the student is enrolled at Carleton to update a family's financial situation. Students and their families may assume that the College will continue to provide comparable assistance for subsequent years assuming the family's financial circumstances remain constant. If those circumstances change dramatically, financial aid may also change. It will be the College's objective to keep aid awards as stable as possible over a student's years of attendance. Financial aid is not automatically renewable and students and parents must apply each year they are seeking assistance.