Financial Aid Words Students Need to Know

KHEAA's Financial Aid Tip of the Month

High school seniors headed to college this fall need to become familiar with some financial aid terms that they will probably hear. This list from KHEAA may help.

  • ·         Accrue. This term, which means to increase or accumulate, is often used to refer to interest on loans. It means that the interest is added to your loan until the loan is fully paid.
  • ·         Bursar. On many campuses, the bursar is the official in charge of funds. You will make tuition payments to that office and will receive financial aid funds from that office.
  • ·         Capitalize. You may see language that says your loan interest will be capitalized if you don’t pay it while in school. This means it will be added to the principal.
  • ·         Disburse. This term means to pay out. You may see it as a verb telling you that your financial aid will be disbursed by a certain date. Or you may see it as a noun, disbursement.
  • ·         Grace period. After you finish college or drop below half-time status, you have a certain length of time before you have to make payments on your federal loans. That time is the grace period.
  • ·         Master Promissory Note (MPN). This is the form you must sign before you can receive federal loans. It is a legally binding promise that you will repay the loans.

KHEAA is a public, non-profit agency established in 1966 to improve students’ access to college. It provides information about financial aid and financial literacy at no cost to students and parents. KHEAA partners with Overture Technologies to provide the KHEAA Student Loan Marketplace at www.kheaamarketplace.com to help students and parents find the private college loan that best suits their needs. KHEAA also provides the ThinkAhead Net Price Calculator to universities and colleges. The calculator, available on a school’s website, lets students and parents determine their out-of-pocket costs for attending that school. KHEAA also helps colleges manage their student loan default rates and verify information submitted on the FAFSA.


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