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Financial Literacy

Federal Financial Aid Resources

  • Filling out the FAFSA: This Department of Education-published guide to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) takes applicants step-by-step through each FAFSA question.
  • NSLDS Students can access their federal loan and Pell Grant history on this Department of Education website. Log in with your FAFSA PIN to view your detailed loan history, repayment status, outstanding balances, and contact information for your lenders/servicers.
  • Student Aid on the Web: The U.S. Department of Education's Official guide to Federal Student Aid programs, including grants, loans, and work-study.

General Financial Aid Resources

  • BigFuture | CollegeBoard: This site, maintained by one of the biggest names in college planning, offers information on applying for aid, paying your bill, and finding scholarships. Unique features include "Financial Aid Myths," "EFC: FAQs" and an easy-to-use EFC calculator.
  • Financial Aid Glossary: Learn the meaning of all those financial aid abbreviations!
  • Finaid.org: A plain-language guide to all types of financial aid, including loans and private scholarships. Includes a collection of calculators for estimating college costs, selecting the best loan, and calculating financial aid needs.

Budgeting & Money Management

  • CashCourse: offers free, online financial education courses and other money management resources. The National Endowment for Financial Education designed the courses specifically with college students in mind.
  • Mint: This free personal finance tool (lauded by Kiplinger and Money magazine) can help you create a budget and track your spending. Sign up to be alerted when your bills are due or if you have exceeded your budget.
  • Motley Fool: Offers hundreds of straightforward, humorous articles about personal finance, stocks, and investing. Includes an extensive collection of "Foolish Calculators" and a "60-Second Guide to College Savings."
  • SmartyPig: A free, Web-based savings program designed to help members save for specific goals.

Credit

  • AnnualCreditReport.com: Allows you to request a free credit report once every 12 months from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Help build a solid credit history by repaying debt on time and checking your credit report regularly for innacuracies and fraudulent activity.
  • FICO Score Estimator: Provides a FICO score range from Bankrate.com. Asks 10 questions about your credit situation to come up with a score range and doesn't require any identifying information.
  • The National Foundation for Credit Counseling: The nation’s largest and longest serving national nonprofit credit counseling network. NFCC also offers a website, DebtAdvice.org which helps consumers understand the wise use of credit and locate a counselor if they need assistance.