Why Do Only Some Schools Require the CSS Profile

Why Do Some Schools Require a CSS Profile, While Others Do Not?

The CSS profile is a valuable tool, but not every school will require it? Why is that? What is the difference between the CSS and the FAFSA? What schools do require the CSS profile and what do they need that information for? These are just a few of the questions that can plague a potential college applicant. The realm of financial aid for students is a complex subject and you will require all the help you can get. Here, then, is a brief explanation of the CSS and why some schools want you to have it, while others aren’t so worried about it.

The CSS profile is an in depth look at your financial situation and that of your parents. It even covers specific assets that your parents own, such as houses, cars, businesses and asks where your siblings go to school and how that education is paid for. The purpose behind this is to allow potential schools to look at your finances and decide how much to allot you in the form of financial aid if you are accepted. These forms are also used for schools that allow early acceptance.

So, that sounds great, but why don’t all schools require it? Actually, filling out both the FAFSA and the CSS profile is a good idea, though it is not a necessity. The CSS profile is required for private colleges and universities that will have to provide their funding to allow you to attend school there. Public schools usually do not require the CSS, and will only require the FAFSA be submitted by the required date.

So, in essence, the FAFSA is required to attain federal funding for school, while the CSS profile is required for private schools and other College Board members to provide you funding. Each type of school has its own benefits and drawbacks. However, with the CSS profile, you will have to pay an additional fee for each additional school that you want your application sent to, while the FAFSA is free of charge. The CSS profile application also carries a registration fee, though there are a number of waivers used each year for students and families in dire financial straits.

Filing out the CSS profile can be confusing, but it is an important part of getting the funding needed to further your education.