Student Financial Services

Financial Aid Glossary

Cost of Attendance (COA)
Your total cost of attending school for one academic year, including tuition and fees, books and supplies, living expenses, and transportation.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
A measure of your family’s financial strength that is calculated according to a formula established by federal law. The information you report on your FAFSA form is used to calculate your EFC. Your EFC is neither the amount of money your family will have to pay for college nor the amount of federal student aid you will receive. It is a number used by the school to calculate the amount of federal student aid you are eligible to receive.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Parents
A loan that may be borrowed by a parent of a dependent, undergraduate student. The maximum annual PLUS Loan amount that a parent can borrow is the cost of attendance (COA) minus any other financial aid received.

Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
A federal student loan based of financial need. The Department of Education pays the interest on the loan while you are attending school at least half-time, during the first six months after you leave school (referred to as a grace period), and during a period of deferment (postponement of loan repayment). The annual loan limit is determined by year in school and dependency status.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
A federal student loan that is not based on financial need. The borrower is responsible for paying the interest throughout the life of the loan. The annual loan limit is determined by year in school and dependency status.

Federal Work-Study (FWS)
A federally-funded program that provides job opportunities to students who have financial need. Eligibility is determined according to the results of the FAFSA and availability of funds.

Charges applied to your school bill in addition to tuition, room, and board. They include your orientation fee, student activity fee, and other charges associated with your labs or classes.

Financial Aid Package
The total combination of your scholarships, grants, work-study, and loans.

Financial Need
The difference between your cost of attendance (COA) and your expected family contribution (EFC).
COA - EFC = Financial Need

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
A form completed by current and prospective college students to determine eligibility for student financial aid, such as grants, work-study, and loans. The FAFSA form is available online at Xavier's federal school code for the FAFSA is 003144.

An award made to a student on the basis of financial need. Most types of grants, unlike loans, are sources of free money that generally do not have to be repaid.

Loan Entrance Counseling
An online loan counseling session required of first-time federal education loan borrowers. The counseling ensures that you understand the terms and conditions of your loan(s) and your rights and responsibilities.

Loan Servicer
The company that collects payments, handles customer service inquiries, and manages other services associated with student loans. The Department of Education assigns all federal loans to loan servicers. Private lenders also may use loan servicers to handle the administrative tasks related to maintaining private loans.

Master Promissory Note (MPN)
A legal document in which you promise to repay your loan(s) and any accrued interest and fees. The MPN also explains the terms and conditions of your loan(s).

Private Loan
An education loan that is administered through a private lender. Private loans may be borrowed by students, parents, and other individuals and can be used in addition to or instead of federal loans.

A type of free money, which usually is based on academic merit, talent, or a particular area of study.

Student Aid Report (SAR)
A paper or electronic document that gives you some basic information about your eligibility for federal student aid and lists your answers to the questions on your FAFSA form. You should check the accuracy of reported data and make corrections if necessary.

A process in which the Office of Student Financial Services confirms the accuracy of the data provided on the student's FAFSA form. If selected for verification, you will be required to submit a Verification Worksheet and provide additional documents to support the information you reported, e.g., federal income tax returns, W-2 forms, photo identification, high-school diploma.