Do Financial Aid Questions from Need-Blind College Mean that Acceptance is Pending?

Question: If a need-blind school is sending requests for missing financial aid information just days before they send their admissions notifications… is this a sign you’ve been accepted?

Although an acceptance may indeed be pending for you, the request for missing financial info doesn’t necessarily mean this. At need-blind colleges, the admission office and the financial aid office usually operate as different entities. So, while the admission folks are going through their checklist to make sure your admission application is complete and then evaluating your candidacy, the financial aid officials are concurrently ticking the boxes on their own checklist to see if any financial aid materials are missing. Then, if they get the word from admissions that you have been accepted, they will be prepared to add your financial need with that of the other accepted students in order to see how much the whole group of new students will “cost” and where this figure fits into the college budget.

So, although it would be comforting to think that an 11th-hour follow-up query from a financial aid office is a harbinger of good news ahead, this is not usually the case.

But I do hope your news is good anyway! 🙂

(posted 12/5/2011)