CSS Profile

What is a CSS/Financial Aid Profile? What are the benefits?

A College Scholarship Service Profile (CSS) is a service that helps you (the student and/or parent) to manage and make competitive financial aid decisions. The CSS profile also helps you see your family's financial strengths. It is also the only service that calculates both the institutional and estimated Federal Methodologies. The CSS is also customized by including your institution's or programs unique questions. Many institutions and colleges participate in the CSS profile.    Once the application has been processed, the application will be sent to colleges/programs/institutions that you chose. The application can be found online at www.collegeboard.com .  BENEFITS - Data collection is accurate and reliable and can be accessed 24 hours, 7 days a week. - Given data (by the students) enables colleges and programs to identify lower income applicants which determines qualification of fee waiver - The calculation of the Institutional Methodology helps student award institution financial aid and the calculation of an estimated Federal Methodology estimates the eligibility for federal aid before the federal ISIR arrives. - The CSS profile helps evaluate what the family financial strength may look like if the students' parents are divorced or separated. 

  • Are there fees?

    For students, it costs $5.00 to register. Each report from a college or program costs $18.00.

  • Is it necessary to complete a CSS application?

    No. Not all programs and institutions participate in the CSS profile.

  • When can I start applying?

    You can start applying in the fall.

  • Do I still have to apply for the FAFSA if I already applied for the CSS profile?

    Yes, students who want federal student aid must still apply and complete the FAFSA. However, the FAFSA can only be filed on or after January 1.

  • Is the CSS profile renewable?


Middle School

High School

College Years