College Guide

Blog

July 25, 2012 11:00 AM The Financial Aid Shopping Sheet

By Daniel Luzer

After much ado, the Department of Education earlier this week finally introduced its “shopping sheet” for financial aid.

The standardized sheet represents a financial aid format the department wants all colleges to eventually use to allow potential students to easily compare financial aid offers.

The standard sheet shows how much the college costs in total, how much the student has received in grants, and how much the student will pay annually (the total cost minus the grants the student receives). The sheet also displays the college’s graduation rate and student loan default rate, and compares that to national averages.

Apparently administrators from 10 large American institutions (including the entire State University of New York system and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) have agreed to use the department’s suggested template.

Check out the sheet here.

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer