How to Apply for Financial Aid as an Undergrad


Watch this video about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) from StudentAid.gov to learn how you can access grants, loans and work-study jobs to help fund your education.

Applying for Financial Aid

Start with the FAFSA

The majority of students in CCU's College of Undergraduate Studies qualify to receive some level of financial assistance. In order to be considered for any type of financial aid, students must fill out the FAFSA.

CCU's Service Central office exists to partner with you in your college investment. The step-by-step financial aid guide below will help you understand the financial aid application process beginning with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Additional information regarding financial aid basics, applying for scholarships, tax benefits, student loan repayment, and much more can be found on the NASFAA website.

Determine the Correct FAFSA Year
  • The FAFSA is available on October 1 each year, giving students an early indication of their financial aid status and awards.
  • The FAFSA collects income and tax information from an earlier tax year. The FAFSA requests tax information from the "prior-prior" tax year. The 2022-23 FAFSA requires tax information from the 2020 tax year. The 2023-24 FAFSA requires tax information from the 2021 tax year. The FAFSA will be easier to complete as students will have their taxes completed by the time the FAFSA is filled out.
Starting classes at CCU FAFSA year Earliest FAFSA is available Tax year required on the FAFSA
Summer 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023 2022-23 FAFSA October 1, 2021 2020
Summer 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024 2023-24 FAFSA October 1, 2022 2021

Can I choose which year’s tax information I provide on the FAFSA?

No, you won't be able to choose. The FAFSA has always asked for one specific tax year. The 2023-24 FAFSA will ask for 2021 tax information.

What if my income is substantially different than the tax year required on the FAFSA?

You will still need to provide the “prior-prior” tax year information. You can contact the Service Central office and let them know your situation has changed.

Which FAFSA do I complete?

If you're starting classes at CCU Fall 2022 or Spring 2023, you’ll complete the 2022-23 FAFSA. If you're starting classes at CCU Summer or Fall 2023, you’ll complete the 2023-24 FAFSA. Please see chart above.

Where can I get more information on the FAFSA?

Applying for Financial Aid at CCU

  1. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on the  FAFSA Web site. The 2023-24 FAFSA is available October 1, 2022. (Colorado Christian University's School Code is 009401.) The IRS Data Retrieval Tool is available for the 2023-24 FAFSA. New updates were made to the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to address security concerns and to better protect applicants' sensitive information. To minimize errors and delays in processing, we encourage students to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool when completing the FAFSA. Students completing the 2023-24 FAFSA should input income and tax information directly from their 2021 federal tax return onto their online FAFSA. For the most accurate and prompt results, do not estimate income or taxes on the FAFSA.
  2. The Department of Education randomly selects students who have completed the FAFSA for a process called verification. If you are chosen, you will be notified on your Student Aid Report (SAR) and will need to submit additional documentation to the Service Central office. CCU's financial aid verification process is completed entirely online through the Verify My FAFSA system. Minimum additional documentation includes IRS tax transcripts for you and your parent(s) (if you did not complete your FAFSA using the IRS Data Retrieval process), and a verification worksheet completed and signed by both you and your parent(s).
  3. Complete the CCU admission process as quickly as possible. Your admission file must be complete before Service Central can review your file for financial aid awarding. Admission requirements include a final high school transcript or diploma, verifying completion of your high school degree. No financial aid funds can be disbursed without proof of high school or GED completion.
  4. All applicants to CCU's College of Undergraduate Studies will automatically be considered for academic awards and scholarships. Admission to CCU and consideration for academic awards is selective and based on a thoughtful review of your application and supporting documents. Learn more about the requirements for academic awards and scholarships.
  5. Once you have been awarded financial aid, you will receive an e-mail advising you to log into Self-Service Financial Aid and view the financial aid that is available to you. You will need to accept or decline your awards online under the My Awards tab in Self-Service Financial Aid. Because of the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, all student loans are now offered through the Direct Loan Program. If you have been awarded student loans, go to the U.S. Department of Education Direct Loans site and sign your Master Promissory Note. Students who have previously received Stafford loan funds from CCU must complete a new MPN. If you are a first time Stafford Loan borrower at CCU you must also complete an Entrance Counseling Interview.
  6. If you have been awarded Colorado State grants you need to submit a Colorado Residency form online. (Your CCU log in will be required to access this form.) If you have been awarded a College Opportunity Fund grant, you must also complete the COF stipend application on the College Assist Web site.
  7. CCU correspondence to students is primarily through e-mail. Students are responsible to keep their e-mail contact information up-to-date and to check their e-mail inbox regularly. Students' current account information is always accessible in Self-Service Student Finance.
  8. Research outside scholarships opportunities. There are many scholarships available for students who wish to pursue them. Visit our Additional Resources page for more information on outside scholarship sources.
  9. After you have accepted your financial aid award, complete your arrangements to pay CCU tuition and fees for the coming semester. All payment arrangements must be made before the beginning of the semester to secure registration for courses. Check out the Payment Options page for more information.
  10. To view your account summary, including tuition and fee charges, pending financial aid, and payment history, please go to Self-Service Student Finance and click on “Account Activity.” You can view your statement of account and make payments on an outstanding balance. To view past term history, please select the appropriate term.
  11. To maintain state and federal financial aid eligibility, students must be enrolled in coursework that satisfies the degree requirements for an eligible program of study. Coursework that is not required to meet degree program requirements will not be eligible for state or federal financial aid. Once students have earned the number of credits required to graduate and met all other degree requirements, they may not continue to receive financial aid to maintain studies at CCU. For additional information on maintaining financial aid eligibility, please review the CUS Financial Aid Handbook.
  12. Keep copies of all information you fill out and submit to CCU, including your FAFSA. Additional information regarding financial aid at CCU can be found in the Financial Aid Handbook.

Contact Info

  • Office of Financial Aid

    Phone: 303-963-3230
    Fax: 303-963-3231
    Email: financialaidsupport@ccu.edu