Undergraduate Aid Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some frequently asked questions regarding undergraduate financial aid at Emory. If you have a question that’s not answered here, feel free to contact your financial aid advisor. We’re always here to help.

View graduate financial aid frequently asked questions.

Emory Advantage

The Emory Advantage program reduces debt burden for families with annual incomes of less than $100,000 who demonstrate a need for financial aid. Learn more about Emory Advantage.


Cost of Attendance is an estimate of the total amount it will cost you to go to school for an academic period. It includes tuition and fees that will be charged to your student account, books and supplies, and an estimate of very moderate living expenses based on figures for the Atlanta area. The standard academic year includes nine months of living expenses.

Students are encouraged to look for ways to cut their monthly expenses to make it possible to live within the budget set by the Emory’s Office of Financial Aid. While you may submit an appeal to increase your cost of attendance to include certain expenses the decision to approve or deny the appeal is guided by professional judgment and federal guidelines.

Items that may be considered on appeal with appropriate documentation include the one-time cost of a computer (not to exceed $2,500) for an academic program of study; childcare expenses if the student is a single parent or if a spouse is employed; the cost of dental insurance (student only); out-of-pocket medical, vision, and dental expenses incurred by the student during the period of enrollment; automobile insurance and repairs incurred during the period of enrollment for the student's car, and mileage for students who commute 400 or more miles per week and/or incur expenses related to rotation assignments. The cost of attendance cannot be increased to cover consumer debt (i.e., credit card or automobile payments). To request a copy of the Appeal for Budget Adjustment form, contact the Financial Aid office.

The primary factor is financial need. Financial need is computed by ascertaining educational costs (tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, and a personal allowance) less family contribution (the measure of your family’s financial resources available to help pay for school).

When there is more than one child in college simultaneously, enrolled at least half time, your family contribution is divided among college students. So, if there are two children in college one year, the family contribution will be divided between the two if the sibling is enrolled in a 4-year undergraduate program; community college and graduate students are not considered in this institutional calculation. If there is only one undergraduate the following year, 100% of the family contribution is expected to be available for this student.

At Emory, eligibility for financial aid is based on federal and institutional estimates of your family's ability to contribute to the cost of education on an annual basis. A typical financial aid package may include grants, loans, and work. Consistent with federal guidelines, students are asked to assume a larger proportion of their expenses as they move closer to graduation. Keep in mind that your financial aid package is likely to change each year for one or more of the following reasons:

  • You miss the priority deadlines
  • A change in family income
  • A change in family assets
  • A change in the number of children in college
  • A change in enrollment
  • A change in the cost of education
  • Your loan amount may increase as you continue through school
  • Availability of institutional funding

Students at Emory have certain rights and responsibilities. Read more about them.

Students must be citizens or eligible noncitizens of the United States to be eligible to receive federal aid and/or need-based financial aid from Emory. Read more about international student aid.


Emory College and Undergraduate Business students are infrequently approved to enroll in fewer than 12 hours and usually only in their final semester. To remain eligible for need-based aid, students must take 6 or more hours. Students taking less than 6 hours will not be eligible for need-based aid and their entire financial aid package will be canceled for the semester. If a student receiving need-based aid enrolls in 6 to 11 hours, tuition charges are prorated based on hours enrolled, and grant aid will be adjusted accordingly. Federal Direct and private loans are not adjusted and remain the same for 6 to 12+ hours enrolled.

Merit scholarships are adjusted on a case by case basis and adjustments are made to ensure the amount of the scholarship amount does not exceed the cost of tuition. For merit aid only, students may enroll in 1 or more hours.

If a student under-loads (less than 12 hours), financial aid will not be adjusted or disbursed until after the add/drop/swap period so that the Office of Financial Aid can make accurate adjustments to reflect the student’s finalized hours of enrollment.

Application Process

The Online Pathway to University Students (OPUS) is Emory's web-based student information system through which students register for classes, check the status of their financial aid, view their student account, and update their addresses. A student must have an OPUS ID in order to access her or his information. Contact OPUS Help to get additional information relating to OPUS access.

Four of the most common errors are:

  • Late filing of the FAFSA or PROFILE or submitting tax documents late
  • Failing to read all instructions
  • Incomplete applications
  • Incorrect Social Security numbers

You can monitor the status of your aid application through OPUS. Your to-do list will indicate any outstanding items needed by our office. We cannot determine your final eligibility for financial aid until all required documents have been submitted.

Once you have been offered financial aid, you will be sent an email informing you that your financial aid notification is ready to be viewed and accepted online via OPUS. Acceptance of Stafford loans is required before the loans can be processed. When accepting a loan, be sure to accept the Federal Subsidized Stafford Loan before accepting the Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loan and/or the Federal Grad PLUS Loan. Further instructions can be found under the link for your specific school or program.

You will be notified electronically through OPUS when your financial aid package is available for review. Make sure to update your email address information under Personal Information after logging into OPUS.

Yes, you should review your SAR and make corrections as necessary. If you need to make corrections to the SAR, you can make them online under Make Corrections to a Processed FAFSA at FAFSA on the Web.

If Emory is not listed, contact the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 800.4FED.AID. Emory's school code is 001564.

No, only the courtesy application is needed.

It is an easier, faster way to provide tax information for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If you complete the FAFSA after January 30, 2020, you will be prompted to enter your FSA ID and link to the IRS web site. The retrieval process will display your tax information, if applicable, and allow you to transfer it to your FAFSA. Our office encourages everyone to retrieve their tax data if you and your parent(s) have filed 2019 tax return(s) prior to completing the FAFSA. Students and families that do not use the IRS data retrieval process may be required to submit an IRS tax transcript directly from the IRS to complete the federal verification process.

IDOC is a service provided by the College Board. If you complete a Profile application, tax documents for the student, custodial parents, and noncustodial parent, if applicable, must be submitted to IDOC. In early February, the College Board will send an IDOC instruction email that includes your personalized IDOC ID number. All documents sent to the College Board must be accompanied by your personalized IDOC cover sheet.


The Direct Subsidized Loan is a federal loan with interest paid by the government while you are in school at least half time. In the 2012–2013 aid year, this loan was reserved for undergraduates only and was discontinued for graduate students.

The Direct Unsubsidized Loan is a federal loan that accrues interest while you are in school. You have the option of paying the interest or deferring it until after you begin repayment.

Repayment of subsidized and unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans begins six months from the date you graduate or cease to be enrolled at least half time. These six months are called a “grace period.” The subsidized portion of your loan does not accrue interest during this time. There is no penalty for early repayment.

There are a number of lenders who offer a private education loan to help students meet the remainder of the cost of attendance not met with a Federal Loan. However, in order to qualify, you must be able to pass a credit and/or debt-to-income check. These loans do not go into repayment until six to nine months after you cease to be enrolled. Interest does accrue on private education loans from the date of disbursement until the loan is paid in full. Learn more about lenders who offer private/alternative loans and the terms of the loans available.

To receive a private educational loan, you must have a valid credit history as defined by the lender of the loan. Before applying for one of these loans, we recommend you order a credit history report, check it closely for accuracy, and resolve any erroneous information. The following agencies can provide you with a credit report: Equifax Credit Information Services 800.685.1111; Experian 888.397.3742; TransUnion Corporation 800.888.4213.

Since approval of some non-need-based student loans and most parent loans is based on credit history, you may want to order a credit report if you will need these loans to finance part of your cost of education. Check the report closely for accuracy and resolve any erroneous information prior to applying for educational loans. The following agencies can provide you with a credit report: Equifax Credit Information Services 800.685.1111; Experian 888.397.3742; TransUnion Corporation 800.888.4213.

The Student Access Loan is considered gap funding for undergraduate students who need assistance securing additional funds to pay for educational expenses. The low-interest loan is available exclusively to Georgia residents. The loan is managed by the Georgia Student Finance Commission (GSFC). Further instructions can be found under Types of Aid for your specific school.

Federal Work-Study

Students are allowed employment in only one federal work-study (FWS) job at a time with one exception; a student may be employed in two FWS jobs if one of the positions is in the Emory Reads tutoring program (a division of the America Reads program). For more information on Emory Reads, please see Student Employment.

A student can be employed as a regular student worker, which is funded entirely by the hiring department, and as a federal work-study student worker simultaneously.

Federal work-study students are limited to working 20 hours per week during periods of enrollment and 40 hours per week during periods of non-enrollment such as winter and spring breaks. For further clarification regarding periods of non-enrollment, please see Student Employment for Emory College or Oxford College

NOTE: Students who work more than 20 hours per week (among all campus jobs) are subject to deduction of FICA (Social Security) taxes from wages. Therefore, 20 hours per week is the maximum number of hours recommended for academic reasons as well as tax reasons.

Yes, at any point during the academic year you may change your federal work-study job. However, we recommended that you give your employer at least two weeks notice to process all necessary paperwork. You must be properly terminated from your previous position prior to being hired into the new position. For accurate record-keeping purposes, it is important that you advise your new employer that you have recently changed positions.

Yes. Emory Human Resources provides each student employee with a W-2 form after the end of the calendar year.

You must be hired for an Emory federal work-study job and work to earn your allocation. You will earn the offered amount by working and receiving biweekly paychecks paid directly to you from Emory’s payroll department. The maximum you may earn during the academic year is the amount of your FWS allocation. The earnings you receive are intended to offset your living expenses as an Emory student. How you choose to use these funds is entirely at your discretion. You will earn FWS funds for your work at an hourly rate (ranging from $9.00 to $11.00 per hour for undergraduates and from $11.00 to $12.50 per hour for graduate students).

Your department should notify you when you reach your annual FWS maximum. The department has the option to continue your assignment and paying you 100% from its departmental budget or end your assignment altogether. If funding permits, most departments make every attempt to continue your assignment.

Billing and Payment

Billing and payment processes are managed by the Office of Student Financial Services.

Please visit the Student Financial Services website for information on their billing schedule. You can call them at 404.727.6095 as well.

Please visit the Student Financial Services website for information regarding payments.

Bank of America, SunTrust, and Wells Fargo banks are immediately adjacent to the Atlanta campus. Emory Alliance Credit Union and ATM machines are located on campus. A BB&T ATM machine is located within walking distance of the Oxford College campus.

This amount will vary. If your financial aid package creates a credit balance on your account, you will receive a refund from Student Financial Services. However, it may not be available to you in the first few weeks of school. Please anticipate needing some money for books, living expenses, and other incidentals.

Before aid can be credited to your account, you must have no outstanding Financial Aid To-Do items on OPUS and you must be enrolled. The law allows disbursement of funds to begin 10 days from the official start of the academic term as decided by the university's Board of Trustees. The actual start date of courses for each program may vary from the official university calendar.

Student Financial Services will mail a 1098T form (tuition payments) and 1098E form (student loan interest) to all students who have paid tuition or student loan interest. For further information regarding 1098T and 1098E processing, please visit their website

Getting in Touch

Please keep in mind our primary means of communicating with you will be email. Therefore, it’s also very important that we have your correct mailing address. Email and mailing addresses can be updated and reviewed on OPUS under your personal information.

Our address and phone number are:

200 Dowman Drive
300 Boisfeuillet Jones Building
Emory University
Atlanta, Georgia 30322
Phone: 404.727.6039 |
Fax: 404.727.6709

You can contact the financial aid advisor assigned to you at the above number or find your adviser's email address on the advisor page.