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Timing, Complexity of FAFSA College-Aid Form Deters Applicants

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid remains the single most important financial-aid application form that students must fill out to qualify for student aid, scholarships and loans.

Yet, about 2 million students nationwide whose family income would have made them eligible for a federal Pell grant failed to file a FAFSFA in 2011-12, according to a study by Mark Kantrowitz, a national expert on the subject.

The study showed that about 1.3 million of those students would have qualified for full Pell grants, which puts the amount of unclaimed federal aid at more than $750 million.

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