Financial Aid Process

Q. What is financial aid?

Financial aid is funding to assist paying for your college education that comes from sources outside of your family. Gift aid and self-help aid are two categories of financial aid. Gift aid comes in the form of grants and scholarships and does not have to be repaid. Self-help comes in the form of loans and employment. Financial aid at Kent State University is awarded to students based on financial need and/or merit. A student may have a combination of grants, loans, scholarships and employment for a financial aid award. There is some type of financial aid available regardless of your income.

Q. Who is eligible to receive financial aid?

A person must be officially admitted and enrolled as a regular student in an eligible program to receive federal aid funds. A regular student is someone who is officially accepted for enrollment for the purpose of obtaining a degree or approved certificate. If the student is merely allowed to take some courses before being officially admitted to the program (for example, a Guest student), the student is not considered to be a regular student and will not be eligible to receive federal financial aid until they are officially admitted to a degree or certificate program.

Q. How do I apply?

File as soon as possible after October 1 each year.  

To ensure maximum financial aid eligibility, complete the FAFSA no later than February 1.  The FAFSA now uses income from an earlier, already completed tax year.  Therefore, you do not have to wait to you complete your current year tax return! Please visit our Applying for Aid page for more details on specific award years.

Students may apply for financial aid at In addition, visit the Federal and State Aid page

Q. What happens after I apply?

Once Kent State University receives your financial aid application results from the federal processors, we determine your eligibility based on your financial need. At that point the student's record runs through our automated processing programs and an Initial Financial Aid Award Notification letter is mailed (incoming Freshman only) to the student. Continuing students will receive an email award letter.  As subsequent adjustments are made to your financial aid, an email will be sent notifying you of any changes. FlashLine always has the most up-to-date information about your student aid and we encourage you to view that often. Follow the steps below to login to FlashLine.

  1. Log FlashLine and select "Student" from the main menu.
  2. Under Finances, click on "Financial Aid".
  3. Click on "Financial Aid Awards", select the current aid year from the drop down and Submit.
  4. Click on the "Award Overview" tab.
  5. Select "Award Messages" or click on each award to read more information.

If you need assistance with your username and password, please call the KSU Help Desk at: (330) 672-HELP

Q. How is my financial aid award determined?

The federal government has established a formula which determines your expected family contribution, or EFC, and can be found on the top-right corner of your Student Aid Report (SAR). This formula, which is used by colleges and universities throughout the country, estimates your family’s financial strength in order to determine the amount your family should be able to contribute to the cost of education for the academic year. Family income, assets, size of the family, number in college, as well as an allowance for retirement are among a few of the items evaluated by this formula. The expected family contribution (EFC) is subtracted from the cost of attendance to determine your financial need. Once this is determined, the student financial aid office is able to determine the types and amounts of federal, state, local and institutional aid you are entitled to receive. These include both need and non-need based aid. Once the award(s) have been determined the student is mailed an official financial aid notification, often called an "award letter".

Cost of Attendance Example

 Cost of Attendance $12,000 - Expected Family Contribution $3,500 = Financial Need $8,500

Q. When will I receive my financial aid?

Financial aid cannot be disbursed to your student account until you complete all processing requirements, including promissory notes, Verification, etc. Provided all steps have been completed, financial aid will disburse 10 days prior to the start of each semester. Refunds are processed for students who have financial aid awards that exceed their bill for the semester. 

Q.  How do I view my financial aid on my e-bill and current account balance?

Any awarded financial aid will be listed on your e-bill under "Get My Account Balance" by clicking on the Student tab in FlashLine under Student Account Balance. See the link to the document below provided by the Bursar's Office for further details on how to view your e-bill and current account balance online. You may also contact the One Stop for Student Services office at (330) 672-6000 if you have difficulty understanding your e-bill or online account summary.

FAQs Regarding Electronic Billing (PDF)