Frequently Asked Questions

This page contains general, student-focused information related financial aid. For additional related to the role of parents, legal guardians and/or family members, visit the Parent and Family FAQ.

Federal Student Aid regulations allow schools to review special circumstances in order to more accurately reflect any loss in income from what was reported on the FAFSA. Some examples that may be considered are loss of employment, a spouse/parent dies, or a divorce. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid to discuss your next steps with a Financial Aid Counselor.

Federal Student Aid regulations allow schools to review unusual circumstances, with appropriate documentation, to determine if a dependency override is possible. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid to discuss your next steps with a Financial Aid Counselor.

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is used to determine your eligibility for federal student financial aid, including grants, loans and work-study programs. In addition, it is used by the state of Illinois and Concordia University Chicago to determine eligibility for need-based grants.

Students will be able to complete and submit a FAFSA as early as October 1 every year. Students will be required to report income information from an earlier tax year. Note: all Illinois residents should complete their FAFSA before December 1 or risk being denied Illinois Map Grants due to state budget limitations. FAFSA applications filed after this date will be processed; however, some types of financial aid may no longer be available. 

Financial aid packages can only be offered to students who have completed their FAFSA.

Complete the FAFSA online at To make sure that Concordia University Chicago receives a copy of your FAFSA results, make sure you list our school code: 001666. This application is FREE. If you are asked to pay a fee for processing, you have accidentally gone to the wrong website.

You will need records of untaxed income, Federal Income Tax Returns, W-2 forms, bank statements and investment records for both parents and students.

Only students who have been admitted to Concordia University Chicago are eligible to receive a financial aid award. Financial awards will be offered within 7 to 10 business days after the FAFSA results are received in the Office of Financial Aid. Once the student’s financial aid file is completed, he/she will receive notification in the mail.

We encourage all students to file the FAFSA in order to determine their full eligibility for all types of financial assistance. In order to be considered for any federal, state and low-interest loans and work-study you must file the FAFSA. If you plan to apply for private scholarships, many agencies and organizations require the FAFSA to be filed in order to be considered for their scholarships. And, in the event anything dramatically changes with your family’s finances during the academic year, the FAFSA on file can be used to determine additional aid types. Remember, the FAFSA must be filed each academic year for each child attending college.

Usually your high school guidance office is aware of scholarships and grants for which you may qualify. Also, many local organizations and businesses provide grants and scholarships to help students attend college. Websites like FastWeb and the Illinois Student Assistance Commission’s website are excellent resources for additional information on scholarships.

Explore potential sources in your community, as well. Your church, parent’s employer and/or local chamber of commerce or other community groups may have information not widely publicized online.

The Office of Financial Aid reviews each student’s circumstances in determining appropriate financial assistance and the impact of outside scholarships. No student can receive funding that exceeds the total cost of education. In rare instances when the addition of outside scholarships results in a total financial aid package that exceeds the cost of education, we will reduce loans and work-study first. If you will be receiving any private outside scholarship assistance, we encourage you to contact your Concordia-Chicago financial planning counselor for more specific information and assistance.

100 percent of our eligible, full-time undergraduate students receive some type of financial assistance based on need and/or merit in the form of scholarships, grants, loans and work-study awards. Concordia University Chicago awards more than $17 million in institutional scholarships and grants to undergraduate students each academic year.

The application for admission is also the application for most institutional merit-based scholarships and awards. If you are applying for admission and wish to determine if you meet the requirements for any additional awards or grants offered, please view our Scholarship and Awards fact sheet. Use our Net Price Calculator to calculate your scholarship awards instantly.

The best way to find out is by applying. Concordia-Chicago’s Office of Financial Aid has applications for congregation aid and LCMS district aid available to use. They are also available on our financial aid forms page.

The College Scholarship Fraud Prevention Act provides protection against fraud in student financial assistance. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) cautions students to look for these telltale statements: “The scholarship is guaranteed or your money back,” “You can’t get this information anywhere else,” “I just need your credit card or bank account number to hold this scholarship,” “The scholarship will cost some money.”

If you have a question about a particular opportunity, the Office of Financial Aid can provide additional guidance.

Additional information about Federal Student Aid and related documents are available online:

Many parents and/or students qualify for an educational tax credit. For more information on these tax credits, please visit the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website for additional details or contact the IRS directly at 800-829-1040. You may also consider checking with a professional tax preparer.