Financial Aid one step at a time

Applying for financial aid can seem a bit overwhelming and complicated; It involves the government, after all. But it's the key to bringing a Christian education within reach for most students and families.

To help you navigate the process, review the step-by-step guide below.  If you have more questions, see if they're answered in our financial aid application FAQ. 

Steps to applying for financial aid

Step 1. FSA ID

Create your Federal Student Aid ID:

  • The FSA ID is used to sign the FAFSA in step 2, as well as certain federal financial aid documents
  • The student will need an FSA ID, and will use the same FSA ID each year.
  • If the student is dependent, one parent will need an FSA ID. The parent will use the same FSA ID each year, and will use it for all of their children.

Step 2.  FAFSA

Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year.

  • Students are encouraged to complete and submit the FAFSA via the Internet at Paper applications are available upon request from the Department of Education by calling (800) 4-FEDAID.
  • For maximum aid, submit the FAFSA by April 30 prior to the academic school year you plan to attend WWU.
  • Remember to provide the WWU School Code (003799) on the FAFSA so your information may be released to WWU.
  • The FAFSA is available October 1 prior to the school year, and uses the prior year’s tax information. For the 2023-24 school year, the FAFSA is available October 1, 2022, and uses the 2021 income tax information. 

Step 3.  Complete and submit your WWU Financial Aid Application

Step 4.  Verification

NOTE: The federal government selects about a third of all aid applicants for verification. Only students who are notified that they have been selected for verification need to complete the following procedure:

  • Download a Verification Worksheet. Complete and return the form as instructed.
  • You can use the IRS Data Retrieval at to update your FAFSA with IRS verified information or mail your IRS Tax Transcript to Walla Walla University. If you did not file and will not file, you must complete a Non-Filer Form.
  • If you are single and under age 24, you need your parents to use the IRS Data Retrieval at to update your FAFSA with verified information or have your parents mail their IRS Tax Transcript to Walla Walla University. If your parents did not file and will not file, they must complete a Non-Filer Form.
  • You must sign the form under Step 3.  If you are a dependent student, you must also have a parent sign the form.  The completed form and all required tax paperwork can be mailed to Student Financial Services or faxed to (509) 527-2556.

NOTE: An IRS Tax Transcript is obtained from the IRS. Copies of the 1040 tax forms are not acceptable. 

Step 5.  Financial Aid Award

After you have submitted all required documents, Student Financial Services will issue a Financial Aid Award.

Your award will include:

  • An award letter detailing your financial aid package.
  • A personalized estimated financial plan showing a quarterly breakdown of expenses and the financial aid from each aid source that will be credited to your student account.  The financial plan will give your estimated down payment and monthly payment figures for each quarter.

Unless otherwise noted, financial aid awards are disbursed one-third per quarter for fall, winter, and spring.  Each time there is a change in the financial aid award, the student is issued a new award letter.

Step 6.  Loan Promissory Notes and Entrance Interviews

If Student Financial Services determines that you are eligible to receive loans, including the Federal Direct Loan, the Federal Nursing Student Loan (NSL), or Institutional Loans, you will need to complete the following:

  • Promissory Note - a promissory note for each loan you qualify for will be electronically assigned to you.  You must sign the form(s) before you may finalize your registration.  Make a copy of the form for your record keeping.
  • Entrance Interview - an entrance interview is required for each type of loan you borrow.  The interview needs to be completed online.  Check your award letter to determine which of the entrance interviews you must complete. 
  • Loan Reference Form -  For both Direct and Campus-based loans, you'll need to complete the Loan Reference Form. This will also show up on your myWWU to-do list. Make sure you list three references at different addresses. 


Step 7.  Receive Financial Clearance Quarterly through myWWU

Each quarter, students have a financial hold that they must clear before finalizing their registration.  All loan promissory notes and entrance interviews as well as the students down payment are required steps to complete prior to receiving financial clearance.  MyWWU is available to students once they have been admitted.

Important Information

FINANCIAL AID FORMS are available online from Student Financial Services.

LATE APPLICATIONS. Financial aid applications received after April 30 prior to the school year are considered on a first-come, first-served basis as funds are available.  Students who submit applications, corrections, or other required information less than two weeks before the start of classes usually receive less financial aid, may encounter delays at registration, and may have to register late unless they can cover the quarter's down payment without financial aid.

LACK OF INFORMATION. Students who do not supply the information required for each type of aid are not awarded aid until the information is received. The award is forfeited if the information is received after the program deadline.

REAPPLICATION. In order to continue receiving financial aid, recipients must reapply for financial aid each year.

TRANSFER OF AID. Funds awarded by Walla Walla University cannot be transferred to other institutions.

Unless otherwise noted, financial aid awards are disbursed one-third per quarter for fall, winter, and spring. Each times there is a change in the financial aid award, the student is issued a new award letter by email.