Financial Aid Terminology

College Scholarship Service Profile. This financial aid form is required of all financial aid applicants and is more extensive than the FAFSA for U.S. citizens and permanent residents. We recommend gathering as much personal financial information as possible before beginning. The profile must be completed on line on the College Board’s website; Yale’s CSS code is 3987. If applicable, families should complete all required CSS supplements as well.

For more information, see CSS Profile in the Forms section or visit the College Board’s website.

The amount of gift aid a family needs to be able to afford one year of Yale. Yale financial aid packages meet this amount dollar for dollar with a Yale Scholarship and any available outside resources such as a Pell Grant. This represents the difference between Yale’s Estimated Cost of Attendance and the Expected Family Contribution.

Charges that are billed from Yale. This includes tuition, room, and board, as well as the Yale Hospitalization and Specialty Care insurance premium (unless a student waives this coverage). Direct costs are split evenly between two bills—one for each academic term. Also called Billed Expenses.

Yale University’s online system for electronic billing and payment of student accounts. ​Yale does not mail paper bills; eBill-ePay is the University’s official means of communicating monthly financial account statements.

Access eBill-ePay

Entitlement grants are awarded by the federal government, state agencies, or other agencies not affiliated with Yale. The criteria for receiving entitlements are based on federal need, city or state of residence, or affiliation with an employer. An entitlement grant may have a merit component, but if the student would not receive the resource without need, the resource is generally considered an entitlement.

Examples of entitlement grants include:

Entitlement grants reduce Yale Scholarship dollar for dollar.

The total estimated cost of one academic year at Yale. This includes both direct costs and indirect costs. A family’s Demonstrated Financial Need is calculated on the basis of this figure.

2017–2018 Estimated Cost of Attendance for Yale Undergraduates
 Tuition and Fees $51,400
Room $8,700
Board $6,800
Estimated books and personal expenses $3,670
TOTAL $70,570

The total amount a family is asked to contribute toward a student’s Yale education. It is used to cover both billed expenses and unbilled expenses. The EFC includes:

The Expected Family Contribution is not the amount that will appear on a Yale term bill. Rather, it is an estimate of the total Net Cost a family will pay to cover a student’s estimated expenses for one year, including Indirect Costs.

Yale calculates the Expected Family Contribution through a holistic review process. As part of this process, we use a formula that considers the following:

  • parents’ income
  • parents’ assets (cash, savings, home equity, other real estate and investments)
  • family size
  • number of children attending college
  • student’s expected income from summer and term-time jobs
  • student’s assets (cash, savings, trusts, and other investments)

Yale also evaluates other circumstances, such as exceptional medical expenses, on a case-by-case basis.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid. This form is required for all financial aid applicants who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Most of the required information can be gathered from your federal tax returns. The FAFSA can be completed on line on the U.S. Federal Student Aid website; Yale’s FAFSA code is 001426.

For more information, see FAFSA in the Forms section or visit the Federal Student Aid website.

A form sent by SFS in May to all incoming students who are financial aid recipients. The specific form differs based on a student’s nationality. It is important to complete and return this form as soon as possible to help verify your family information and to notify Yale about all external funding sources.

For more information, see Family Information Supplement (U.S. and Canada) or Family Information Supplement (International, non-Canadian) in the Forms section.

A designation made by the U.S. federal government when students with financial need complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). With the exception of a small number of service-related jobs, FWS status makes no difference for a student’s eligibility for term-time employment at Yale. It does not affect a student’s wages, hours, or chances of being employed.

Through the Institutional Documentation Service (IDOC), the College Board collects families’ tax returns and other documents on behalf of participating colleges and programs, including Yale College. Tax returns sent to IDOC are used to verify a student’s eligibility for financial aid.

  • All prospective and continuing students should submit tax returns to IDOC, which is the most efficient way for Student Financial Services to access and analyze information on tax returns.
  • Prior to using IDOC, you must complete the CSS Profile. Within a few business days of completing the Profile, you will receive an e-mail with an IDOC ID and instructions for uploading documents.
  • Canadian and international tax returns can now be indexed at IDOC for your Yale application.

Confidentiality

When you submit your tax documents to IDOC, the confidentiality of your information is ensured just as if you had submitted the documents directly to Yale Student Financial Services. The College Board will electronically store your information in a secure environment, and the paper copies of your documents will not be retained. Your IDOC submission will be communicated only to Yale Student Financial Services.

Additional information

For more information on IDOC, or to view or add documents, visit the IDOC Web site.

To learn more about tax documents required for financial aid applications, see Tax Returns of Parents and Students in the Forms section.

These are Yale’s estimates for additional costs beyond tuition and room and board, including books, supplies, and personal expenses such as laundry, toiletries, and clothes. Travel expenses to and from New Haven are considered with Indirect Costs and vary depending on a student’s home address. Also called Unbilled Expenses.

A summer fellowship available to undergraduates receiving Yale financial aid. Students must apply for the award, which can be used for one summer of international study. For more information, visit the International Summer Award (ISA) website of the Center for International and Professional Experience.

Grants funded by private companies, employers, and nonprofit organizations to cover educational costs. Their award is based on criteria directly related to a student’s performance in academics, sports, music, or another field of special interest. Merit scholarships may reduce or replace the Student Effort component of the Yale financial aid award. For more information, see Scholarships and Grants.

Yale does not award merit-based scholarships, but Yale students often qualify for merit awards from other organizations. Some resources for finding outside scholarships are listed under Sources for Outside Aid.

The amount a student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) are expected to contribute toward the entire cost of attendance. The amount is dependent on a family’s income and assets. Many lower-income families will have a Parent Contribution of $0.

Part of the Expected Family Contribution.

Yale believes that both parents have a responsibility to contribute toward their child’s college education, even if they are divorced or separated. For this reason, we require financial information for both parents to generate a financial aid award. The Yale financial aid award letter lists one total Parent Contribution, which a student’s parents may determine how best to meet.

We understand that some families may have extenuating circumstances that would require an exception. Students may petition to have their noncustodial parent’s financial information waived in such cases by submitting a Noncustodial Parent Waiver Petition form with supporting documentation. Submission of a waiver petition form does n​ot guarantee that the noncustodial parent’s requirements will be waived.

Loans available for a student’s parent(s) to cover all or part of the Expected Family Contribution. Demonstrated Financial Need is not a prerequisite for these loans, but they do require a credit check. All loans charge interest and some charge fees. For more information, see Loan Options.

An entitlement grant funded by the federal government for U.S. citizens and permanent residents with financial need. For more information, see the Federal Student Aid website.

The QuestBridge National College Match is a college and scholarship application process that helps outstanding low-income high school seniors gain admission to, and scholarships and grant aid for, the nation’s most selective colleges.

For more information, please visit the QuestBridge website.

An entitlement grant funded by the federal government for U.S. citizens and permanent residents with exceptional financial need. For more information, see the Federal Student Aid website.

The amount of students’ own financial assets that they are asked to contribute toward educational costs. Students with financial assets pay 25% of their assets annually. For students without any financial assets, the Student Asset Contribution will be $0.

Part of the Expected Family Contribution.

A standardized estimate of a student’s ability to contribute financially to her/his educational costs while enrolled at Yale. It has two components: Student Employment and the Student Summer Income Contribution. For more information, including the amounts for different types of students, visit our page on understanding the Student Effort or our Student Effort FAQs.

Outside merit scholarships can be used toward both parts of Student Effort; they are used to reduce Student Employment first. Students may also borrow loans to cover all or part of the Student Effort amount.

Part of the Expected Family Contribution.

The amount a student should anticipate contributing financially from term-time employment. The standard minimum amounts for the 2017–2018 school year are:

2017–2018 Student Employment
Freshman Sophomore Junior Senior
$2,850 $3,350 $3,350 $3,350

Earnings from a term-time job are paid directly to the student, and nearly all students use these earnings to cover Indirect Costs such as books and personal expenses. Students work on campus an average of eight to twelve hours a week during the academic year to fulfill their Student Employment expectation. For more information on student jobs, visit the Student Employment website.

Outside merit scholarships can replace some or all of a student’s expected term-time earnings. Students who choose not to work on campus may also take out loans to fulfill their Student Employment expectation. For more information, see Scholarships and Grants and Loan Options under Types of Aid and Other Financial Resources.

Part of the Expected Family Contribution and of Student Effort.

A unique nine-digit number assigned to a student upon matriculation. The SID is used in place of a student’s Social Security Number for indexing and accessing documents and information. It is also a student’s account number.

The SID is located in the upper left corner above the date on the first page of the financial aid award letter. Whenever you contact Student Financial Services, please have the Student Identification Number available.

Loans available directly to students for covering the cost of education. All loans charge interest and some charge fees. Although loans are not required in Yale undergraduate financial aid packages, students may choose to cover some or all of the Student Effort portion of their financial aid award with loans.

Undergraduates interested in student loan information should see Loan Options under Types of Aid. Graduate and professional students can find loan information under Loans for Graduate and Professional Students or on their school’s financial aid website.

Yale’s estimate of what a student could earn through summer employment to contribute toward her/his educational costs. For more information, including the amounts for different types of students, visit our page on understanding the Student Effort or our Student Effort FAQs.

Most non-Canadian international students do not have an expected Student Summer Income Contribution.

Outside merit scholarships may be used to cover the Student Summer Income Contribution if they exceed the Student Employment amount. Students may also choose to take out loans to cover their Student Summer Income Contribution. For more information, see Scholarships and Grants and Loan Options under Types of Aid and Other Financial Resources.

Part of the Expected Family Contribution and of Student Effort.

A combination of resources that meets 100% of a family’s Demonstrated Financial Need with gift aid. It includes the Yale Scholarship and any available outside resources, such as a Pell Grant. All Yale awards are based on financial need.

Student loans are not required as part of the Yale Financial Aid Award.

An option offered by Yale Health for meeting the University’s requirement that students have medical insurance for hospitalization and specialty care. The plan provides coverage for all approved hospitalization and specialty care services, as well as for prescriptions.

Students are automatically enrolled in and will be billed for Yale Health Hospitalization/Specialty Coverage. If you already have valid and sufficient coverage, you may waive Yale Health specialty coverage by submitting an online waiver form by September 15 (full year and fall term) or by January 31 (spring term only). After the waiver has been processed and approved, the insurance premium charge will be removed from your bill.

Please note: If you are an enrolled student attending Yale at least half time and working toward a Yale degree, the University provides you with primary care services at the Yale Health Center at no charge, even if you waive Yale Health Hospitalization/Specialty Coverage.

For more information, visit the Yale Health website.

An optional ten-month payment plan available to all Yale students regardless of financial need. The payment plan divides Yale’s direct costs into ten equal monthly payments. No interest is charged. A $100 fee is charged every year a family chooses to enroll. For more information, visit the YPP website.

Because financial aid awards may not be processed or finalized before the deadline to register for the Yale Payment Plan, students may register with YPP using an estimated award (new students) or financial aid figures from the previous year (continuing students).

Yale’s need-based grant aid for undergraduates, the Yale Scholarship, is a gift and thus never has to be repaid. If a student is awarded financial aid, the Yale Scholarship amount is included on the Financial Aid Award Letter.

The Yale Scholarship can vary from a few hundred dollars to over $50,000 per year; the average Yale need-based scholarship in 2015–2016 was $43,989. For additional statistics, see Affordability. Area Yale Club awards, endowed scholarships, and other gift aid from Yale’s alumni and friends may be used as grants in place of some Yale Scholarship funds.

The opportunity for juniors and second-term sophomores to enroll in courses outside the United States. Students with financial need who are approved for the Year or Term Abroad receive financial aid for their term(s) abroad based on their program expenses and their Expected Family Contribution.

Read more about financial aid for the Year or Term Abroad

The Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program (Yellow Ribbon Program) supplements the Post-9/11 GI Bill for eligible service members and their dependents. Through this program, Yale funds a portion of its tuition and fees that exceed the maximum benefit of the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and the VA matches those funds.

For more information on Yellow Ribbon eligibility and benefits, see Yellow Ribbon Program on the VA’s Education and Training website.

For information on using military education benefits at Yale, see Military Benefits and Financial Aid.