Filing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid or California Dream Act Application
A variety of aid is available for all income levels. Whether or not students think they are eligible, we encourage them to apply for financial aid each year. The annual priority filing deadline for State and University grant consideration is March 2. Applying begins with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or the California Dream Act Application (CADAA). Both applications are free. The information provided on your FAFSA or CADAA is used to calculate your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The EFC is used by UC Davis to determine your eligibility for financial aid. You can apply for financial aid before you apply for admissions–so don't wait, apply as soon as October 1 of the previous year.
- Important Things to Remember (click to expand)
- • Apply early! Submit your application by the March 2 priority deadline each year for full aid consideration.
• You can submit your FAFSA or CADAA starting October 1 for the upcoming academic year.
• "Prior-Prior Year" allows students and their families to use income and tax information from one year earlier than previously required. This means that 2021 data will be used in 2023-24.
• Include the UC Davis School Code: 001313.
• Select the correct aid year on the FAFSA or CADAA when applying (i.e., 2022-23 for the current academic year, 2023-24 for fall 2023 admission).
• For help filing the FAFSA, contact FAFSA at 1-800-433-3243.
• For help filing the CADAA, contact the California Student Aid Commission at 1-888-224-7268.
• Keep copies of your tax returns and other documents in case they are needed.
• UC Davis Financial Aid and Scholarships will begin reviewing 2023-24 FAFSA and CADAA applications in early 2023.
• For information on when you can expect your financial aid package, please visit our entering or continuing student web pages.
• Reapply every year.
The following tools are available to assist you in estimating your financial aid eligibility:
- The UC Davis Net Price Calculator can be used to estimate financial aid for those considering UC Davis.
- If you would like a detailed description of how the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is calculated, visit the EFC Formula Guide website.
Common FAFSA and CADAA Mistakes
Financial Aid and Scholarships may have encountered a discrepancy that prevented us from awarding financial aid. If the name, date of birth, and/or social security number you reported on the FAFSA or CADAA does not match the school record you will need to resolve the discrepancy before we can review your application and financial aid eligibility.
Compare the information you entered on the UC Application, FAFSA, or CADAA to your social security number. Make sure they are an exact match.
- If your name, date of birth, and/or social security number are incorrect:
- You’ll need to complete a new FAFSA or submit a CADAA Name/Date of Birth Change Request.
- You'll also need to submit a correction with Admissions.
- If your name, date of birth, and/or social security number are correct:
- Contact the Social Security Administration to ensure that the discrepancy is resolved.
Continuing Cal Grant Recipients
If you are already a Cal Grant recipient, there is no need to submit a GPA verification form. Your eligibility for Cal Grant is evaluated annually. You can verify your renewal through WebGrants4Students.
Applying for Cal Grants
Students apply for a Cal Grant when they submit the FAFSA or Dream Act Application. Cal Grant applicants are also required to submit a GPA Verification form directly to the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) by March 2 as part of the application process. Students can access the Cal Grant GPA Verification Form for FAFSA or CADAA filers from the CSAC website. Be sure to select the appropriate form based on which application you filed.
CSAC determines eligibility and notifies the student by sending a California Aid Report (CAR). You can monitor and manage your Cal Grant account on the CSAC website.
Applying for Scholarships at UC Davis
Entering freshmen and transfer students apply for scholarships when they complete the UC Application for Admissions and Scholarships. Current UC Davis undergraduates can apply for scholarships by completing and submitting the Continuing Undergraduate Scholarship Application once it becomes available in October through the early January deadline. Detailed information about the application process is available in our undergraduate scholarships section.
- Application Tips (click to expand)
• File the FAFSA or CADAA each year by March 2 for priority consideration. Upon successful completion of your financial aid application, you may receive a confirmation notice that your application has been properly submitted.
• Include UC Davis School Code 001313 and a housing code on your application.
• Immediately respond to any requests from Financial Aid and Scholarships.
• Accuracy is important when you apply for financial aid. All information is subject to verification according to state and federal regulations. False statements or misrepresentations may be cause for the reduction, cancellation, denial, or repayment of financial aid.
• It is crucial to file the FAFSA or CADAA by the March 2 priority filing date. If you filed a 2020 tax return, use information from your return to complete the application.
For those who have not filed a tax return:
• If you did not and are not required to file a 2020 tax return, use your financial information such as 2020 W-2s or final pay stubs, and current bank statements.
• FAFSA provides a tool that allows parents and students to directly access tax information from a secure IRS website. Look for this feature when completing your FAFSA online, as it is highly recommended to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.
• Parents of dependent students will need to provide their income information and electronically sign the student's FAFSA or CADAA. StudentAid.gov can help you determine your dependency status, which applies to both federal and state financial aid applications.
• For general information on financial aid at the University of California, view the Paying for UC video on YouTube.
What to Expect After Filing your Financial Aid Application
- If you filed a FAFSA you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) from the federal processor. To check the status of your application, visit Federal Student Aid.
- If you filed a CADAA, you will need to log in to dream.csac.ca.gov to view your SAR or to check the status of your application.
- Once completed you may receive an email confirmation, that you have successfully submitted your financial aid application.
- The SAR provides you with an Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Financial Aid and Scholarships will use the EFC to determine the types of aid you may receive.
- You can submit corrections to your application online through FAFSA or CADAA.
- Students with a valid SAR will be directed to log in to MyAwards to view their personalized UC Davis aid package and requirements. First-year and transfer students can access their information shortly after receiving admission notification. Continuing students will receive an email when their aid is available – typically by late May.
Questions About Applying?
- Federal Student Aid Information Center (for FAFSA)
- 1-800-4-FED-AID (433-3243)
- California Student Aid Commission Customer Relations
(for Dream Act Application and Cal Grants)
- UC Davis Undergraduate Financial Aid
- UC Davis Undergraduate and Prestigious Scholarships