The Financial Aid and Scholarship Department provides financial assistance and guidance to support student access and success. Financial aid awards and services are not based on race, color, national origin, age, gender, marital status, religion, sexual orientation or disability.
CSUN has four major types of financial aid available to students and their families: grants, work-study, loans and scholarships. Financial aid consists of funds from federal, state and institutional aid, in addition to private scholarship donors.
- Federal and state grants are need-based funds that do not need to be repaid.
- Federal Work-Study funds are need-based and must be earned through authorized work experience.
- Federal Direct Loans are need-based and non-need-based and repayment begins upon leaving the University or dropping below half-time enrollment. An online loan entrance counseling session and a Master Promissory Note are required for all new borrowers. Loan exit counseling is required for all students who are graduating, dropping below half-time enrollment or leaving school (including withdrawing from all classes).
- State aid and institutional aid are need-based. Students apply through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA) for AB 540 eligible students. Cal Grants and State University Grants assist students with tuition payment.
- Most scholarships are need-based, although a limited number of merit-based scholarships are available. Scholarships require separate applications and are awarded competitively. In most cases, they do not require repayment. Scholarship information and applications can be found at Scholarships.
To apply for financial aid, submit a FAFSA or a CADAA no earlier than October 1 and no later than March 2 for priority consideration to receive aid in the following academic year. The Title IV school code for CSU, Northridge, is 001153. These applications are used to determine eligibility for all federal, state and institutional funds, as well as scholarships requiring demonstrated need. Students should submit all additional forms requested by the Financial Aid and Scholarship Department as soon as possible and check the CSUN Portal “To Do List” to see if additional documents are requested. Students should keep their contact information updated on the Portal to ensure receipt of important notices.
Financial aid applicants are expected to know application deadlines and to apply early, respond immediately to requests for documents, read all financial aid emails carefully and promptly, keep copies of all forms submitted, and create a special file for financial aid documents.
Many funds are awarded before the school year begins and most students are eligible for some financial funding. For more information about financing your education, refer to the Financial Aid website.
Satisfactory Academic Progress
An annual review of progress toward an eligible degree or certificate is required by federal, state and institutional rules as one condition for maintaining student financial aid eligibility. Academic progress is reviewed in several areas: units attempted versus units earned, maximum units to complete a degree and good academic standing with the University. Students who fail to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress in any of these areas will be ineligible for financial aid funding. Students may be able to restore their aid if there are extenuating circumstances for an appeal. The Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy and possible appeal conditions are available online at Satisfactory Academic Progress.
Enrollment Adjustments for Financial Aid Recipient
Financial aid awards are based on full-time enrollment in a minimum of 12 units for undergraduates and 8 units for graduates. Financial aid amounts will be reduced or canceled for students enrolled less than full time. Students must stay enrolled to maintain eligibility. In some cases, students may be required to repay financial aid if they drop or withdraw from classes after receiving financial aid funds.
Withdrawing from the University
Students who receive financial aid funds must consult with the Financial Aid and Scholarship Department prior to withdrawing from the University regarding any required return or repayment of grant or loan assistance received for that academic term. If a recipient of financial assistance under federal Title IV financial aid programs withdraws (including medical) from the institution during a payment period, the amount of grant or loan assistance received is subject to return and repayment provisions governed by Federal regulations. The policy on Withdrawals and Return of Title IV Funds is available online at Student Financial Aid Policies (.pdf).