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College Board

CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE®

The College Board's College Scholarship Service (CSS) has pioneered need-based financial aid solutions for over 50 years. CSS Profile is designed by and for aid administrators to help manage the financial aid process efficiently and cost effectively. To determine eligibility for financial aid, CSS Profile uses Institutional Methodology. CSS Profile provides institutions with accurate, timely, and complete financial information about their applicants. By using CSS Profile an institution can:

  • Identify students who need institutional funds to enroll
  • Utilize the College Board's Institutional Methodology (IM) to award private funds
  • Receive comprehensive information about financial aid applicants according to the institutions calendar so they can make effective aid decisions on a tight schedule
  • Estimate eligibility for federal and state funding
  • Communicate early with applicants about potential eligibility for aid

CSS Profile benefits

  • Online application access virtually 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Flexible options that allow institutions to adjust the formula for need-based aid
  • An optional Noncustodial PROFILE application that provides information about the divorced or separated parent
  • Information about special circumstances helps institutions evaluate the need for additional funds before an appeal
  • Early information about students from low-income backgrounds
  • An automated fee waiver process that allows qualified students to submit their application without payment


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