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Expected Family Contribution
The EFC, or Expected Family Contribution, is a number used to measure a student's ability to pay for college. It is not the amount of money that the student will be expected to pay, but an index used to determine the student's eligibility for certain types of financial aid, such as the Federal Pell Grant.
How EFC Is Calculated
The EFC is calculated through a Federal formula that considers many factors, including household income, financial assets, number of children in college, marital status, and taxes paid. The EFC is determined by the FAFSA and is not a value that ISU can manipulate.
The term "need-based" is derived from the following formula used in Federal methodology:
Cost of Attendance - EFC = Financial Need
Hence, if your Expected Family Contribution is greater than the cost of attendance at ISU, you will not qualify for need-based awards as you have zero financial need.
For further information about the way that the U.S. Department of Education determines financial need, visit Federal Student Aid.