Apply for Financial Aid

Application Checklist

1. Complete the FAFSA or WASFA online

FAFSA is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. There is one FAFSA WSU school code for all the campuses: 003800. You will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) – by email if you provide an email address. Please review this report for any processing problems.

WASFA is the Washington Application for State Financial Aid. This state financial aid application for DREAMers. House Bill 1079 also allows for in-state tuition rates for qualified undocumented students.

Both applications are available on October 1 of each year and must be completed each year. Current students apply must apply by November 30th every year to be considered for state and institutional aid.  The new student deadline is January 31st.

2. Complete other requirements

If you are selected for verification (a routine review of your FAFSA), you will be notified by email. You will need to complete one or more verification forms and submit copies of your federal taxes (if you filed.) Once verification is complete, we will submit any necessary FAFSA corrections before awarding you. If you are eligible for the aid you requested, we will send you a financial aid offer notice by email.

3. Review and accept your awards

Once you have gone through the awarding process, you will receive a financial aid notice in myWSU. You will need to log in and review the types of aid you are eligible for and then let us know which awards you will accept.and accept your aid.

If you have not received a notice, you can view your status and make sure you have submitted all the required documents.

Once you have been awarded aid, you must maintain your eligibility by making satisfactory academic progress. Be sure to contact a financial aid officer before dropping a class or cancelling your enrollment.

Breaking Down the Cost

When looking at the cost of college and budgeting your funds, there are two types of costs you need to consider: direct costs and indirect costs.

  • Direct costs are those that must be paid to WSU to attend (i.e. tuition and fees).
  • Indirect costs are things such as living expenses, transportation, miscellaneous expenses, etc.

It is important to differentiate between the two; indirect costs are simply estimates used by our office in the awarding process to ensure that you have enough aid, while direct costs are the actual amounts that will be charged to your myWSU account.

We include indirect costs in the budget so that aid can be awarded to assist you in paying living and miscellaneous expenses. The costs provided here are derived from past figures, institutional changes, and cost of living adjustments. They should be adequate for the average student; however, differences in lifestyle and individual tastes can dramatically affect these costs.

Keep in mind that financial aid awards cannot exceed the total cost of attendance (and in many cases will be less than that). If you have additional educational expenses or budget concerns that may change the amount of aid you’ve been offered, you may be eligible for a revision request or and special circumstances appeal.

If you have questions or concerns regarding your budgeted cost of attendance, please contact us.


These indirect costs are accounted for in the cost of attendance to ensure that students have the funds necessary to cover other aspects of their lives. It’s important to note that these allowances are calculated using averages. Your expenses may be higher or lower depending on your personal budget or spending habits. It is important for you to budget and plan accordingly.


Tuition is a direct cost that you must pay to WSU student accounts. The full-time tuition charge covers from 10 to 18 credits at the same cost. Course loads of fewer than 10 or more than 18 credit hours are charged on a per-credit basis.

A note for non-resident students: You should plan on paying non-resident tuition for each year you attend WSU. State policies do not allow individuals to become residents if they move to the state of Washington with the sole purpose of pursuing higher education. See the Registrar’s Office for more information on residency requirements.

Out-of-state students, who pay higher tuition than Washington residents, often need to carefully consider how they will finance their education. Most financial aid packages WSU offers to you as a non-resident, dependent student will include parent loans that require parents to be credit eligible. Families who are unable to assume these loans will need to pursue alternatives, such as finding someone to co-sign a loan with them or seeking other outside financial support.


Depending on which campus you decide to attend, you maybe responsible for paying mandatory fees. These are nonnegotiable and must be paid. This component, as well as the actual tuition, are the two aspects of the cost of attendance that are considered to be direct costs to you.


This component of the cost of attendance estimates your costs of living for the academic year. It is comprised of average living costs, estimated food costs, and other factors.  Students living with parents, will have a smaller allowance, compared to students who live on-campus or off-campus on their own.  Those who live in the on-campus apartments or the Guest House, are budgeted as living on-campus, and it is their responsibility to pay rent. The university will not automatically pay that rent. If students are receiving a financial aid refund, they must use that responsibly to pay their rent.


Books and supplies estimates are calculated using the average expenses of most students. Depending on your major and program of study, these costs can vary. These are indirect costs, paid by you out of pocket. For degree programs requiring the use of extensive materials or books, a Revision Request can be completed to account for any these additional costs. Students are responsible for purchasing books and supplies on their own.

Know the cost of attendance…