Applying for Financial Aid
Most financial aid is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. If you qualify and meet the financial aid priority date, you will be considered for campus-based funds, which include: Federal and state grants, Federal Perkins Loan and Federal and state Work-Study.
All files completed after this date will only be considered for: Federal Pell Grant, Federal Stafford Loans, and Federal Graduate PLUS Loan.
For more information on the types of financial aid available, office policies and resources, please visit the FA Programs, Policies and Resources segment of the Financial Aid website.
View all Financial Aid Forms >>
Steps To Apply For Financial Aid
1. Submit Federal Student Aid Application
- Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), after January 1st.
- The FAFSA determines your eligibility for grants, loans, work-study, and need based scholarships. (You can speed up the process by completing the application online)
- If you don’t have a PIN for the FAFSA, apply for one at http://www.pin.ed.gov/.
- Be sure to list UCD Downtown Campus school code 006740.
- After the FAFSA is processed, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) from the FAFSA processor. Review it for accuracy and additional requirements. If it states that more documents are required, provide them to the Financial Aid office.
2. Complete University Financial Aid Application
- Complete the University Financial Aid Application (UAPP) and submit it to the Financial Aid office.
- An online version is also available on the S.M.A.R.T. system.
3. Submit Additional Information
- Federal tax forms
- Income verification worksheet
- US citizenship or immigration documents
- Selective Service registration confirmation
- Social security card. Respond immediately to requests for information. If you are unsure whether more paperwork is required, check S.M.A.R.T. or contact your financial aid advisor.
4. Monitor Application Status
- Monitor your application and award status on S.M.A.R.T. which will display Missing items, Completed forms, Aid amounts, Required credit hours, etc.
If forms are required, please submit them immediately. Do not wait for a written request from the Financial Aid Office. Most forms can be downloaded from this site or the financial aid site.
Pre-approved Federal Stafford Loan
Federal Stafford Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized) will be packaged along with grants and work-study. Federal Stafford Loans will be automatically offered for Fall and Spring terms only. You may refuse the loan or reduce the amount without any penalty. Maximum grants will be awarded before any loan is offered. You will be provided with instructions on how to accept, decline or adjust your loan once you have been awarded.
If you are a first-time borrower at CU Denver, please complete the following:
Master Promissory Note
- View the list of preferred lenders
Online entrance interview, loan orientation counseling for first time borrowers.
Summer Semester Federal Stafford Loan Request
As stated above, Federal Stafford Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized) will be pre-approved for Fall and Spring terms only. To receive it in the summer, you must submit a separate request for summer. You will receive more information and instructions on this when you are notified that you have been awarded.
Federal PLUS Loan
As a graduate student, the Federal Graduate PLUS Loan will be packaged along with grants, work-study, and Stafford Loans. You are the borrower on the loan. A Graduate PLUS Master Promissory note is required for this loan.
Required Credit Hours
All financial aid will be initially awarded assuming that you will enroll fulltime. You will be allowed to request a reduction in the minimum enrollment required and instructions will be provided at the time you are awarded. Please note that Federal Stafford Loan requires halftime enrollment – 6 credits per term for undergraduate students, and 3 credit in the fall/spring term and 2 credits in the summer for graduate students.
Financial Aid for Extended Studies (Professional/Continuing Education) Courses
If you enroll in Extended Studies (Professional/Continuing Education) courses, the Financial Aid Agreement Form for Extended Studies Courses is required for aid to disburse. Submit one for each semester after you are officially registered in the system.