Calculating Financial Aid Award Packages

Cost of Attendance Budgets are the official costs used in calculating financial aid award packages. These budgets are estimates of a student’s total educational costs for the academic year. You should be aware that these budgets are not to be confused with your actual school bill, which will be routed to you by the Student Accounts Office each semester. 

Understanding Cost of Attendance Budgets, how and why they are used, will help you plan for your expenses and be aware of their use in your financial aid award package. Here are the budgets for 2024-25 for college and high school

How and why are they calculated?

The budgets set a limit to the maximum amount of aid from all sources a student can receive for the academic year. The budgets are the starting point for calculating a student’s need along with the Student Aid Index (SAI) from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) using this formula:

Cost of Attendance Budget – Student Aid Index = Demonstrated Need

These expenses are included in Cost of Attendance Budgets:

UNCSA billable charges

  • Tuition
  • Fees
  • Room and board

Allowances for other indirect expenses a student could have during their school year:

  • Books and supplies
  • Transportation
  • Other personal expenses
  • Loan fees