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Applying for Aid

UC Merced's school code for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is 041271.

How to Apply for Financial Aid

Step 1: Apply for admission to UC Merced by Nov. 30.

Step 2: Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at or California Dream Act application at by May 2, 2024. Visit to explore your options.

Step 3: Submit a Cal Grant GPA Verification form by May 2, 2024.

Step 4: Complete and return any documents requested by the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships by June 1.

Next Steps:  If You've Received a Financial Aid Award

Checkbox Visit the MyFinancialAid section of the UC Merced student portal where you can:

  • View your award(s) online.
  • Review messages from the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships.
  • View your checklist and satisfy outstanding requirements.
  • Accept the terms and conditions of your award(s).

Checkbox Check your email often. We will use the email address you submitted on your financial aid application.

Checkbox If selected for verification, follow the instructions on MyFinancialAid to complete outstanding requirements by June 1.

Checkbox Visit for more information about receiving your aid.


If you're still having issues completing your 2024-25 FAFSA due to your contributor not having a Social Security Number (SSN), Federal Student Aid just announced a temporary solution to allow applicants and contributors without an SSN to immediately access the 2024-25 FAFSA Form after creating a account. 

The Department is temporarily allowing individuals without an SSN to enter and complete the 2024-25 FAFSA. Students and contributors without an SSN must continue to enter their tax information manually. Students without an SSN must verify their eligible noncitizen status through their school before they receive any federal funds. 

What this means for applicants and their families:

  • New users who request a account and need help validating their identity using the knowledge-based questions (as generated by TransUnion) must still complete the manual process. However, they will not have to wait for their identity validation to be completed before they can use their account username and password to access and complete the online 2024-25 FAFSA form.
  • Individuals currently awaiting the results of the identity validation process may begin using the account they created to access the form immediately. The Department will also email these individuals to notify them if they are affected by this change.
  • Individuals can check the status of their identity validation on their dashboard. If the status on the “Personal Information” page of their Account Settings is “no-SSN” with a green check icon, individuals can progress to the FAFSA form. Please note that this status is the same for those who have completed the validation process and those who are temporarily allowed to enter and complete the form. Individuals will receive an email this week if they fall in the latter category.
  • Individuals who are currently waiting for results from the Department do not need to resubmit any documentation to complete the identity validation process.
  • If an individual’s account does not show a status of “no-SSN” with a green check icon and they have not received an email notifying them of this temporary change, they will need to follow the instructions for individuals without an SSN to create a account, as they are not currently in the Department’s system. Here is official guidance for the department for completing the identity validation process for those without an SSN
  • The Department encourages all users without an SSN to complete the identity validation process without delay, even after the student’s FAFSA form is submitted. They must complete the validation process before the beginning of the 2025-26 application cycle, and before the IRS data exchange issues are addressed, to avoid their account being placed in a restricted status.
  • Undocumented students and students who have received Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) remain ineligible for federal student aid. To receive federal student aid, a student must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. national, a citizen of the Freely Associated States, or a lawful U.S. permanent resident or other eligible noncitizen.

More details posted by Federal Student Aid: Update on Access to the 2024-25 FAFSA Form for Individuals Without a Social Security Number 

If the above solutions don’t work for you, we recommend answering “Yes” to the “Direct Unsubsidized Loan Only” question on the FAFSA. This will allow you to bypass adding parent data and capture an official submission date by May 2nd. You will then need to make a correction to your application and update the answer to “No” and add parental data in order to be considered for all types of financial aid. This solution is temporary and is only to ensure your FAFSA is submitted by the priority filing deadline while giving you more time to troubleshoot parent FSA ID and identity verification issues.

Complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Form today! Apply by May 2nd to be considered for all financial aid eligibility.