Freshman – Regular Admissions

We get it. The total cost of a world-class education—the kind you can get at Boston University—is a significant investment for you to make in your future. At BU, we invest in students too. BU awards approximately $220 million in need-based aid to our undergraduate students every year.

And when it comes to college expenses, you can’t plan one year at a time. You need to plot out how you’re going to pay for the entire program, from start to finish. That’s why with the BU Scholarship Assurance your Boston University scholarship will be renewed at the same level each year – guaranteed – with no additional CSS Profile™ required.

Although the “sticker price” is important, what really matters is how much a BU education will cost YOU after taking financial aid into account. How much will that be? Apply for financial aid and find out.

Merit and need-based scholarships, need-based grants, loans, and work opportunities are all available to help families pay their share of college expenses. You can also explore credit- based financing and payment plan programs.

As you might expect, at BU academic excellence counts here. Whether you’re a candidate for a merit or need-based scholarship, we’ll consider your academic performance.

Deadlines are critical, too. Make sure you know them from the start.

Of course, universities vary widely in cost of attendance and availability of financial aid. While the net cost to you and your family is just one factor among many to consider, it’s important to use a consistent measure when making comparisons between offers. The College Board website has an excellent tool, “Compare Your Aid Awards,” to help you make easy and accurate comparisons.

Unfortunately, we’re not able to offer aid to every eligible applicant. But we make every effort to extend our resources to as many students as we can. Our goal is to make it possible for you to enroll at BU.

Required Forms

Both the CSS Profile™ and the FAFSA are required to apply for BU-funded financial aid as a first time recipient. However after the first year BU need-based scholarship aid is guaranteed at the same level as the prior year and no Profile™ is required. Only the FAFSA is required to apply for federal financial aid and state grants, and for these funds the FAFSA must be filed each year. We strongly encourage you to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to import your IRS federal income tax information from the IRS to your FAFSA. This will streamline the application process and help you avoid errors which can cause processing delays.

The 2018-2019 CSS Profile™ and FAFSA are both available starting October 1, 2017. You will receive a financial aid decision along with your admissions decision if you file both forms by the deadline.

Note: For many students the Boston University funded financial aid is an important component in meeting the costs of enrollment.

Other forms may also be required.

Download a printer friendly version of the Regular Admissions Checklist.

To Apply

By February 1

  • Note all applicable deadlines.
  • Submit the 2018-2019 FAFSA.
  • Submit the 2018-2019 CSS Profile™.
    • If your biological or adoptive parents are divorced, separated, and/or do not share the same household list both parents (and any stepparents if applicable) on your Profile, as instructed. The parent you live with most must provide their information on your FAFSA and Profile. Your other (noncustodial) parent must also complete a Profile, which will be appended to your Profile later. Enter your other (noncustodial) parent’s email address on your Profile, as instructed, so CSS can send them information on how to create their separate Profile account log-in.
  • Submit a CSS Profile Waiver Request if getting a Profile from your other (noncustodial) parent will be impossible.
  • Regularly check your BU Applicant Link and email for requests for additional information.

After You Receive Your Aid Decision

Beginning in Late March

  • You may expect to receive a tentative financial aid award by late March, provided that you submitted your aid application by the deadline.
  • Questions? Make an appointment to meet with a financial aid representative during your school/college April Open House event or contact BU Financial Assistance.
  • Create a four-year plan for financing your education at our planning page.

By May 1

  • Acknowledge your Financial Aid Award via the Applicant Link.
  • Submit your Enrollment Deposit.

After You Deposit

By June 1

  • Submit Income Verification in order to confirm your tentative financial aid award. You may expect a finalized award by early July, provided that you have submitted all required documentation in a timely manner.

Mid-May through the summer

We want to do all we can to take your particular circumstances into consideration.  We encourage you to contact our office with any questions about your financial aid.

For information about types of financial aid, see: