Understanding Your Award Letter

Students that have completed all required financial aid materials will receive an Award Letter that shows the estimated amount of financial aid that they will receive for the terms they plan to enroll in. New and continuing students can view their Award Letter online in myAntioch.

What does Budget, EFC, and Need mean?


The Budget refers to the estimated Cost of Attendance for the academic year. This is the overall cost of attending AUSB, including direct expenses (tuition and fees) and indirect expenses (eg. living expenses).  The amount includes tuition, fees, loan fees, books, and living expenses. It is updated on a quarterly basis should a student’s direct expenses change. The academic year runs from July 1 to June 30 each year.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC)

Based on the data you provided on your FAFSA, your EFC is the amount that the U.S. Department of Education calculated that you (and your spouse or parent, if applicable) should be able to contribute to your education. A federally mandated formula considers your household’s taxable and non-taxable income, taxes paid, assets, household size, and the number of family members in college. This is not necessarily the amount you will have to pay out of pocket to AUSB for your tuition and fees.


Financial need is determined by taking the total Cost of Attendance and subtracting the student’s Expected Family Contribution. If the resulting calculation is a positive figure, then you are considered to have financial need.

Unmet Financial Need = Cost of Attendance (COA) – Expected Family Contribution (EFC)

Here are a few additional things to keep in mind when reviewing your Award Letter:

  • You are not required to accept all financial aid offered to you. To make changes to your award, simply write them directly on the award letter before signing and returning to the Financial Aid Office.
  • Review our Award Letter to make sure you have been awarded for all terms you will be attending in the academic year (Summer through Spring). We base your award on your estimated graduation date. If this date is incorrect, please notify your Advisor of the actual date of your graduation.
  • Direct Unsubsidized and Subsidized Loans have 1.068% origination and default fees deducted before the funds are applied to your account. Direct PLUS Loans have a 4.272% origination and default fees deducted before the funds are applied to your account.
  • You must be registered at least half-time to receive financial aid each term, except for Pell eligibility. Undergraduate students must be enrolled for at least six credits (or at least three credits for Pell eligibility), and graduate students must be enrolled for at least three credits.
  • If you are awarded Federal Work Study, this means you are eligible for Work Study. The amount awarded indicates the maximum amount you could receive.

Aggregate loan limits for Direct loans (Subsidized and Unsubsidized) are $31,000 for dependent undergraduates, $57,500 for independent undergraduates, and $138,500 (including undergraduate loan amount) for graduates. You can review your federal loan history at www.nslds.ed.gov using your FSA ID. You should consider the amount you have already borrowed when reviewing your Award Letter. The money you borrow today can affect your financial future, so you should never borrow more money than necessary to cover the cost of your education expenses.