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Bulletin Archive

This archived information is dated to the 2009-10 academic year only and may no longer be current.

For currently applicable policies and information, see the current Stanford Bulletin.

Undergraduate Financial Aid

The University has a comprehensive need-based financial aid program for its undergraduates who meet various conditions set by federal and state governments, the University, and other outside agencies. Students are admitted without consideration of their financial circumstances, except in the case of international students.

In awarding its own funds, the University assumes that students and their parents accept the first and primary responsibility for meeting educational costs. Stanford's policy generally is to exclude undergraduates from being considered financially independent of their parents for University-administered scholarship aid unless a student is an orphan, a ward of the court, or at least 25 years of age. Spouses of married undergraduate students share in the responsibility to meet educational costs.

Stanford expects financial aid applicants to apply for and use resources from state, federal, and private funding sources, contribute from their earnings during nonenrollment periods (for example, summer), and use earnings from part-time employment during the academic year to meet educational expenses. If Stanford determines that an applicant and his or her family cannot meet these expenses, the University may offer financial aid funds to help meet these costs.

The amount of scholarship or grant funds offered to students is determined by the difference between the comprehensive cost of attendance (including tuition, fees, room, board and allowances for books, supplies, personal expenses, and travel) and the amount the student and parents can reasonably be expected to contribute toward educational costs based on family financial circumstances. Scholarships from outside sources may change the University's financial aid award. When a student receives outside scholarships, these funds reduce or eliminate the student's responsibility to contribute from job earnings. If the total in outside scholarships exceeds the student's responsibility (approximately $4,500 in most cases), the University then reduces institutional scholarship, dollar for dollar, by any additional amount.

Students are considered for University scholarship eligibility during their first four years of undergraduate enrollment. The Financial Aid Office (FAO) considers applicants for University scholarship eligibility beyond the twelfth quarter only if enrollment is essential in order to complete the minimum requirements for the first baccalaureate degree or major. Students who enroll for a fifth year in pursuit of a coterminal program, a minor, a second major, a second degree, or the B.A.S. degree are not eligible for University scholarship consideration but may apply for student loans and federal grants. Eligibility for federal student aid is limited to the equivalent of 15 quarters of full-time undergraduate enrollment, including course work taken at other colleges and universities.

For additional detailed information, refer to the FAO web site at

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