FAFSA - Free Application for Federal Student Aid

Completing the FAFSA: Resources

U.S. Department of Education provides several resources and direct support by phone and online to assist students with completing the FAFSA.

State programs that currently provide FAFSA resources for Texas counselors.


For more information Contact:

Guidance & Counseling Department
Address | 708 Palm Blvd. Suite.226 , Brownsville, Texas 78521
Phone | (956) 548-8251
Fax | (956) 548-8448

Assistance in completing college and university finacial aid applications is available at all BISD ECHS campuses.

Please contact your respective campuses for assistance.

Hanna ECHS
Lopez ECHS
Porter ECHS
Rivera ECHS
Veterans Memorial ECHS

TEA Source: Financial Aid Application

HB 3 in 30 Video Series

Presentation on Financial Aid Application (PDF)

Key Dates

With the FAFSA, students are encouraged to apply early to improve their chances of getting a good financial aid package and to meet individual Texas IHEs’ deadlines.

FAFSA forms are posted along the same timeline as TAFSA: October 1 of each year.

 January 15 is typically the deadline for priority consideration for many 4-year Texas IHEs.

What is FAFSA?

  • The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a form completed by prospective and continuing college students.
  • The application informs financial aid decisions regarding students’ eligibility for federal, state, institutional and other opportunities.
  • Federal student aid can be applied toward expenses such as tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, and transportation.
  • Aid also can help pay for other related expenses, such as a computers and dependent care.

Completing the FAFSA: How to Apply

Students log in at to apply online.

Students may also apply using one of the following methods to file a FAFSA:

  • Fill out the form in the myStudentAid mobile app
  • Print out a FAFSA PDF from the site and mail
    the FAFSA for processing


Completing the FAFSA involves many steps

Getting Started

Before completing the application, a student will need to

  • gather required documentation;
  • register (or already be registered) with the Selective Service System, if male and 18;
  • identify colleges and universities (up to 10) to which to send financial information; and
  • create a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID* -- online application only.

    Parents (and the student, if applicable) will need to have filed their income tax returns for the year prior to filing the FAFSA.

Submitting the FAFSA

Once the initial steps are complete, the student will have to complete and submit the application either online or on paper.

A student should check the student’s account on 3-5 business days after submission to verify the status of an application. If the account indicates that the application was successfully processed, the student has completed the Texas graduation requirement to complete a financial aid application.

Completing the FAFSA: Documents Needed to Apply

Documentation Student

Parent/Guardian (student dependents only)

Social Security Number (SSN) Required for online form Required for online form
Drivers license If the student has a license  
Alien registration number If the student is not a U.S. citizen but eligible for
federal financial aid
Federal tax information
or returns including IRS W-2 information

Records of untaxed income,
e.g., child support received,
interest income, veterans
noneducation benefits

Information on cash, savings
and checking account balances, investments, and business
and farm assets

Tracking FAFSA Completions and Submissions

  • The ApplyTexas Counselor Suite hosted by UT Austin provides student level data from the USDE (via MOU with school districts) about FAFSA submissions and completions.
  •  From late October-June, data is released twice weekly. The first report is added to the ApplyTexas site by mid- to late October and is updated in ApplyTexas every Tuesday and Thursday morning.
  •  Districts must enter into an MOU with THECB and counselors must register for an account to access data through their ISD’s ESC.



What is TASFA?

  • The Texas Application for State Financial Aid (TASFA) is used to determine eligibility for state (or institutional) financial aid programs administered by IHEs in the state of Texas.
  • Students who are classified as Texas Residents who cannot apply for federal financial aid using the FAFSA must complete the TASFA or opt out to meet the new graduation requirement.

    FAFSA covers federal and state financial aid opportunities. Students should complete FAFSA if they meet FAFSA eligibility. Students do not need to complete both the FAFSA and TASFA.

Completing the TASFA

  • There is currently a general TASFA application that some Texas IHEs have agreed to use. Other Texas IHEs may use their own form.
  • Currently, each institution has its own process for completing and submitting the TASFA form it uses.
  • The TASFA form posted on the THECB website collects similar information to the information collected in the FAFSA.