The Office of Financial Aid


Avoid the queue!
Answers to the most common financial aid and billing questions:

Federal Aid Census Date

The Federal Aid Census Date (last day of late registration for the semester) is used by the Office of Financial Aid to confirm your enrollment status and subsequent federal financial aid eligibility. Fulltime study, defined as being enrolled in 12 or more credits applicable toward your degree is determined by your enrollment on the Census Date.

Note: The last day of late registration for fall 2018 is September 11, 2018.

Appeal for Special Circumstances

Please visit the Appeal for Special Circumstances Financial Aid webpage for more information about the steps you need to take to request a financial aid Appeal for Special Circumstances.

2018-2019 Direct Loan Interest Rates

For Direct Loans first disbursed on or after July 01, 2018 and through June 30, 2019, the interest rates are scheduled to be the following:

  • Direct Subsidized (Undergraduates) - 5.05%
  • Direct Unsubsidized (Undergraduates) - 5.05%
  • Direct Unsubsidized (Graduates) - 6.60%
  • Direct PLUS (Parents/Graduates) - 7.60%

Please note, these fixed interest rates apply to the period of July 01, 2018 to June 30, 2019. Fixed interest rates on subsequent loans for 2019 - 2020 and thereafter are subject to change.

2018-2019 Excelsior Scholarship Application

The New York State Excelsior Scholarship application for the 2018-19 academic year opened as of Monday, March 26th at 9:00am and will close on Monday, July 23, 2018 at 11:59pm.

The Excelsior application will be available at

Please contact the HESC Scholarship Unit at if you have any questions.

Helpful FAFSA Filing Resources

Department of Education FAFSA Telephone Support

The Department of Education provides telephone support to FAFSA applicants who have questions about how to complete or make corrections to the FAFSA.  Contact the Department of Education support line at (800) 433-3243.

New Borrower Alert

Have you completed your Direct Stafford Entrance Counseling?

Direct Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling is mandatory for all first time borrowers attending UAlbany. Please be aware Entrance Counseling is different than the Financial Awareness Counseling Tool (FACT). Completion of FACT does not satisfy Entrance Counseling requirements. You must complete Entrance Counseling at Refer to your "to-do" items to determine if Entrance Counseling needs completion.

Have you completed your Direct Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN)?

The Direct Stafford Loan MPN is mandatory for all first time Direct Loan borrowers attending UAlbany. The MPN is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loan(s) and any accrued interest and fees. The MPN explains the terms and conditions of your loan(s). Your MPN is valid for 10 years, so you will most likely need to complete this only once while attending UAlbany. The MPN must be completed at Refer to your "to-do" items to determine if the MPN needs completion.

SUNY Smart Track Financial Literacy Tool

University at Albany is pleased to announce a SUNY wide interactive financial literacy tool to help students get on the Smart Track for every financial decision from paying your tuition, to purchasing a home. Click the button below to begin your Smart Track experience!

Attention Smart Track Users

We have been made aware there is an incompatibility issue with Internet Explorer 11 (IE 11) and Flash. Until Microsoft resolves the issue, we recommend using a different browser such as Firefox or Chrome, or a lower version of Internet Explorer.


Useful College Planning Tools

Below are consumer information tools students and families will find helpful in assessing college costs and comparing important college information.

The University at Albany Cost Comparison Worksheet allows you to compare the costs, financial aid offers, and out-of-pocket expenses of the University at Albany to other institutions of higher education.

The College Scorecard includes essential information about a particular college's cost, its graduation rates and the average amount its students borrow. The College Scorecard is a planning tool and resource to assist students and families as they evaluate options in selecting a school.

College Navigator is an interactive website that allows you to explore and compare features of different institutions, including tuition and fees, retention and graduation rates, use of financial aid and student loan default rates. The College Navigator also features a cost calculator and school comparison tool.

The Financial Aid Shopping Sheet is a model financial aid award letter designed to simplify the information prospective students receive about costs and financial aid. Many colleges and universities have adapted a Shopping Sheet. This tool is designed to provide an easy way to make clear comparisons among institutions and make informed decisions about where to attend school.

The Paying for College webpage can be used by prospective students to enter the names and actual financial aid award information to compare up to three schools.

FAFSA Filing Dates

Available every year starting October 1st, the FAFSA should be completed and submitted on-line through

Prospective students wishing to receive priority consideration for aid administered by the Office of Financial Aid must have completed the FAFSA and received an official expected family contribution from the Department of Education by December 1st.

Continuing students wishing to receive priority consideration for aid administered by the Office of Financial Aid must have completed the FAFSA and received an official expected family contribution from the Department of Education by January 1st.

To ensure processing for the current aid year, all corresponding FAFSA forms should be received by November 15th for fall only students and April 15th for fall/spring or spring only students. FAFSA forms received after these dates may not be processed prior to the conclusion of the respective semester. For example, a student graduating at the conclusion of fall 2018, should submit the 2018-19 FAFSA no later than November 15th.

Use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool

Starting in February, students and parents who have filed their 2013 federal tax returns will be able to select the IRS Data Retrieval option on the FAFSA to transfer tax information to the FAFSA. Federal Tax Returns must be electronically filed at least two weeks (or 6-8 weeks if filing paper returns) before using the IRS Data Retrieval process.

We strongly encourage you and your parents to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool which is the fastest and easiest way to provide accurate tax information. The IRS tax information can be reviewed first before being transferred directly into your FAFSA.


The Office of Financial Aid is responsible for the administration of state, federal and institutional financial aid programs.  In conjunction with the Student Financial Center, the Office of Financial Aid assists students and families in navigating the financial aid process.

For assistance, visit the Student Financial Center located in the Campus Center G26, or call the Student Financial Center at (518) 442-3202.