FAFSA School Code: 001146

Award Guide

AWARD GUIDE 2015-16 (pdf)
Understand your
financial aid award,
eligibility and


Disbursement Dates

When your academic year file is complete and there are no holds on your account and no items on your “To Do List,” your aid will disburse and cover any fees remaining on your university balance. All remaining aid, after charges and fees are deducted, will be disbursed to you via Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT) or a check that is mailed to you. This process is run by the Student Financial Services Office.

Financial aid and scholarships are disbursed via electronic disbursement or mailed check on Thursdays throughout each semester.

Financial aid and scholarships are disbursed via electronic disbursement or mailed check on Thursdays throughout each semester.


Short Term Loan Application

Regularly admitted students who are enrolled for Fall 2015 are eligible to apply for a $500 short term loan. The Short-term Loan application will be reactivated Monday, August 24.

Short-term loans will be processed twice a week for pick-up on Wednesdays and Fridays after 8:30 am at Student Financial Services (SSC 230). The first short-term loan will be available for pick-up on Wednesday, August 26.

PLEASE NOTE: No Short-term Loans checks will be processed for Wednesday, September 9 due to Labor Day holiday.

Accept Your Estimated 2015/2016 Financial Aid Offer Now

If you have received an estimated financial aid offer for the 2015/2016 academic year, you must access your Student Center financial aid account to accept, reduce or decline each financial aid award item.  If you do not accept your aid, your student account will not show any anticipated aid and you will be responsible for paying all your fees on July 29.  If awards are not accepted within 45 days of offer, your award may be canceled.

Financial Aid and Payment of University Charges

Click here to view tutorial on how financial aid pays university charges. 

Financial aid recipients are required to pay the difference between all Fall University charges (including registration fees, on-campus housing and board plan) and pending Fall 2015 financial aid. View your pending financial aid in the Finances/Account Inquiry section of your Student Center.  Payment is due by the Fee Payment Deadline of July 29, 2015.

After July 29, the fees box in the Finances section of your Student Center will indicate fees as "Past Due" until your aid goes out. No payments are necessary if you have sufficient pending aid to cover your Fall charges.   Your balance due will automatically be deducted from your financial aid disbursement.

If your file is complete and there are no items remaining on your "To Do List," by August 14, the first possible disbursement for the Fall semester is August 20. All remaining aid, after charges and fees are deducted, will be disbursed to you via Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) or a check that is mailed to you.

Please Note

  • Questions about your student account, fee payment, and being dropped from classes should be directed to Student Financial Services.
  • You may be charged a $25 late fee if your current fees and charges are not paid by the Registration Fee Payment Deadline unless you have sufficient aid to cover the fees and your aid is clear to disburse on the first fall financial aid disbursement date.
  • Students who have no aid or who have not made a payment may be dropped from classes by the university.
  • Spring registration is held until all Fall fees are paid. 

To Do List Items

Submit all requested items on your "To Do List" as soon as possible and no later than June 1 in order to have your file complete before the first fall disbursement. Once the requested forms have been received and completed, they will be removed from your "To Do List".

If you do not turn your requested items in by June 1st, your aid will NOT be cancelled.  Accepted aid will continue to show as pending and may defer fees.  However, you may receive your disbursement later than the first disbursement date of Fall (August 21) and you may be charged a $25 late fee.

Please be aware that if you fax your documents, it takes up to 3 days before the documents show as received on your Student Center.  Documents that are mailed or brought into our office can take up to 4 weeks before the documents show as received on your Student Center.  The date received will be recorded as the date the documents are submitted to our office.

Friday, September 18: Deadline for Maximum Unit and Insufficient Unit Appeals for the Fall Semester

Students who have a hold for Maximum Units or Satisfactory Academic Progress must submit an appeal no later than September 18 in order to be considered for financial aid for Fall 2015. Incomplete appeals will not be processed. Evaluation of this appeal may take up to eight weeks.

IRS Data Retrieval Tutorial for 2015-16

Click to view the IRS Data Retrieval Tutorial to help guide you in this process. 

First-Time Loan Borrowers

First-time borrowers of Federal Direct Stafford loans must complete Entrance Counseling and submit a Master Promissory Note. You are required to submit only one note every ten years during your academic career at CSU, Chico. Loans will not be released until you complete these items.

If you are required to complete and submit a promissory note, you will receive notification by e-mail, and it will appear on your To Do List in your Student Center. Check your To Do List after completion. If either your MPN or loan entrance counseling does not clear within 3 business days, contact our office.

Friday, Sept. 18 is University Census: Financial aid may be adjusted for enrollment

Financial aid is determined by need and by enrollment. Estimated financial aid awards are based on your eligibility and need, and are offered based on full-time status. The number of units in which you are actually enrolled decides the actual amount of financial aid you receive.

At University Census, financial aid awards are revised to match eligibility based on the actual number of units in which students are officially enrolled. Awards may be reduced for students enrolled in fewer than full-time units. If you are arranging to add units through CAVE or through a consortium agreement, please complete the registration process no later than Friday, September 18.

For additional information, see University Census on our Web site. Other useful pages are Undergraduate Eligibility & Enrollment Requirements and Postbaccalaureate Eligibility & Enrollment Requirements.

Cal Grant and Fall 2015 Entering Students

Cal Grant Entitlement participants are required to confirm their high school graduation before being awarded by the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC).  Students are notified by CSAC through an automated e-mail message directing them to view the electronic California Aid Report (CAR) in WebGrants4Students (WGS). The e-mail message directs students to WGS to find details on their Cal Grant award status.  CSAC sends this message to the e-mail address listed on the FAFSA.  Students can verify their high school graduation through WGS.

Middle Class Scholarship

California residents from middle class families with incomes of up to $150,000  and assets of up to $150,000 may be eligible for the Middle Class Scholarship. Apply for financial aid at www.fafsa.ed.gov for Middle Class Scholarship consideration. AB 540 students with a DACA number or without a social security number may also qualify and should file their Dream application at www.caldreamact.org. Middle Class Scholarships will not be awarded until October 2015.

Financial Aid and Scholarship Checklist for 2015-2016

Bookmark or download the Financial Aid and Scholarship Checklist to help you keep track of where you are in the financial aid process, from applying for aid through receiving the funds.

Important Processing Dates and When to Expect Changes to Your To Do Lists/Holds

Verification - Updating your "To Do List" from requested to received takes a minimum of four weeks if you submit hard copies via mail, at our window or drop box and a minimum of 72 hours if your documents are faxed. Preliminary review of verification documents will take a up to twelve weeks from the date your last required "To Do List" item was submitted to our office.

IRS Data Retrieval - It can take up to 21 days from the date you successfully used the Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA before our office is able to upload this change. This process has been completed when you will no longer see the required documentation on your "To Do List."

Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal (SAP) - Review of SAP appeals take a minimum of four weeks from the date the last required item is received. Deadline to submit appeal for Fall 2015 is September 18, 2015. 

Maximum Unit Appeal - Review of Maximum Unit Appeals take a minimum of four weeks from the date the last required item is received. Deadline to submit appeal for Fall 2015 is September 18, 2015. 

Exceptional Circumstance Appeal (All types) Appeals are reviewed in the order they are received. Processing time may take until the end of the Fall semester.

Federal Direct Stafford Loan Application - Applications take at least 30 days to process.

Federal Direct PLUS Application (PLUS Loan) - We initially award the requested amount as a conditional estimate which will show up in the student's financial aid package while we are processing the credit check. The loan is not approved until you receive notification from the lender that your credit was approved. Applications must have been received by July 16 to have an initial award entered in time for the fee payment deadline of July 29. PLUS applications can take up to eight weeks to process.

Alternative Loan Application - Applications take up to eight weeks to process. The first possible disbursement date for Fall term is September 3, 2015.

External Scholarship - After the Financial Aid and Scholarship Office has received a student's external scholarship check(s), the scholarship is entered into the student's financial aid award. The student will receive an e-mail informing them of a change in their award. The turn-around time for complete processing of external scholarships is up to three weeks.

CSU, Chico Scholarships - The 2015-16 CSU, Chico Scholarship application deadline was February 15, 2015. If selected, the scholarship should be posted in your Student Center 2015-16 Financial Aid Award Summary Account by late July 2015.

Office Hours and Appointments

  • Office Hours: Monday - Friday: 8 am - 5 pm.
  • Appointment Schedule:  Monday - Friday: 9-12 am; 2-4:30 pm
  • Phone Hours: Monday - Friday: 8 am – 4 pm.

Only same-day appointments are available with the advising staff in the Financial Aid and Scholarship Office (SSC 250). You can make these same-day appointments by calling 530-898-6451 or by coming to our office window between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. We recommend calling as early as possible in the morning as the appointments fill up quickly. Phone appointments are also available. Appointments are limited and are on a first-come, first-serve basis.