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FAFSA gets a facelift: What you need to know

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Mattheau Faught

A simplified financial aid application will be released around the end of December.

The 2024-2025 Free Application for Federal Student Aid reduces the majority of income-based questions and streamlines entering tax information. Pell Grants are also easier to qualify for.

“There were seven sections with around 108 questions, and now with the 2024-2025 FAFSA, we only have three sections,” said Debra Knighten, director of compliance for financial aid.

The new application puts emphasis on household income and taxes. Previously, the FAFSA used an IRS lookup separate from the other sections on income.

“A lot of the confusion came from the income sections, and how they could get that information from the IRS,” Knighten said. “By simplifying it, they’ve made it easier to import this information into the FAFSA.”

Part of the change was simply cutting out redundancies, such as inquiries about household residents in college or owning businesses.

Sections such as demographic details are now woven into profile setup, which would be one of the first sections new applicants fill out.

“The demographic information that wasn’t eliminated is now part of the FSA ID,” Knighten said.

No dates are announced on when the 2024-2025 FAFSA will be released, but the Department of Education has confirmed it will be near the end of December.

Dallas College is setting up a “landing pad” website to inform students, slated to launch when the application opens.

In the meantime, visit DallasCollege.edu/FAFSA24 to learn more about FAFSA and get prepared to file.

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