The United States Department of Education's website features the FAFSA4caster calculator, which users can access, fill in some details and then get an estimate of what their financial aid eligibility would be, notes Edvisors. This calculator doesn't require users to set up an account and doesn't require the personal identification number that the actual Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, requires.
To access and use the official FAFSA calculator, do the following.
- Locate the calculator
- Fill in requested information
- See the results
Go to the United States Department of Education's subsite for federal student aid and then look for the option to access the FAFSA4caster.
Select the appropriate United States citizenship status to begin. Follow the instructions in the form to enter personal details like date of birth and marriage status, household size, level of college attended, annual income, assets and tax information. When promoted, enter school information and any grants or scholarships already awarded, if known.
Fill in all the required fields, then select the option to calculate the Expected Family Contribution, which determines how much aid in terms of grants and loans will be awarded. After getting this estimate, consider filling out the real FAFSA to get an official number for the Expected Family Contribution.