Financial Aid for Education Degrees
Getting a bachelor's degree in education or attending a teaching program can be expensive without financial help.
Luckily, there are quite a few financial aid programs for people who want to become teachers. With a little research and some time spent on applications, you can qualify for a financial aid program that will pay for your schooling and offer comfortable repayment options for when you begin work.
Once you're ready to become a teacher there are many Federal and state-sponsored grants, such as the TEACH grant, to encourage you to teach in a certain area where teachers are lacking, such as in math and science.
These programs can give you up to $11,000 over four years, as long as you meet the program requirements. There are many different types of grants available, so it is likely that you can qualify for at least one of them.
Many private foundations, schools, and other organizations also offer financial assistance to teachers. Some employers offer help to their employees or children of employees by paying a portion or all of tuition.
Financial Aid Eligibility
In order to qualify for financial aid for education degrees you need to:
- Be a US citizen, or an eligible non-citizen
- Be currently enrolled or accepted to an accredited institution
- Be of good standing in your school (i.e. passing your courses)
- Not owe or be in default of any other institutional programs
- Register with Selective Service if required
Determining Financial Need
The eligibility for financial aid is calculated by subtracting the amount you can afford to pay for school from the cost of the program itself.
When you apply for financial aid, the information you provide allows for an assessment of your family's ability to finance your schooling. This assessment depends on your family's income, assets, and size.
An additional factor is whether you're considered a dependent or independent student. Dependent students will have their ability to pay assessed as well as their parents. To be considered an independent student, you must be one of the following:
- Be 24 years old or older
- Be a veteran of the armed forces
- Be married, an orphan, or a ward of the court
- Have legal dependents (children)
- Be a graduate student
How to Apply
When you apply for financial aid, it's importnat that you complete all the necessary forms. Read the instructions completely and carefully, and ask the financial aid office in your area if you need help.
The majority of financial aid programs use the same application, which is called the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
It is a good idea to make an appointment to sit down with a financial aid officer to talk about your financial requirements. They may be able to connect you with other types of financial aid in the form of scholarships and grants that you can qualify for. The more you can receive in non-repayable funding, the less you'll need in financial aid.
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