Student Aid Report (SAR)
When a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) is submitted, the processor analyzes the application information using a federal formula to calculate an estimated family contribution (EFC). An Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) is sent via EDE Express to each college listed on the FAFSA. The student will receive an e-Mail Notification of Student Aid Report (SAR) Processing, a SAR Acknowledgement, or a paper SAR, depending on the type of FAFSA filed and whether the applicant's e-mail address was provided on the FAFSA.
- An e-Mail Notification of SAR Processing (for applicants who provide an e-mail address) is sent within three to five days, and notifies the student that their application has been received and provides eligibility status information more quickly than the SAR Acknowledgement or the paper SAR. The e-Mail Notification of SAR Processing includes instructions on how to access an electronic SAR (e-SAR) online and print the e-SAR as often as needed. An applicant should wait at least 24 hours after submitting a FAFSA electronically before checking the status online.
- The SAR Acknowledgement (for applicants who do not provide an e-mail address), sent within seven to ten days, provides a summary of the processing results of applications entered electronically by the school or input via FAFSA on the Web (FOTW). The SAR Acknowledgement is also an eligibility document and provides the EFC number; however, it cannot be used to make corrections. Corrections to an application entered electronically must be made by the student via the Correction Entry on FAFSA on the Web or by the school via FAA Access to the CPS.
- A paper SAR is designed to notify the student of the application and eligibility status and provides a paper-based means of correcting or confirming application data. A paper SAR is sent within three weeks of processing.
Each type of the output document summarizes the data that was provided on the FAFSA. The primary purpose of the SAR is to report the EFC, which is determined using a federal formula. The postsecondary school must receive the student’s information in order for the student to receive federal financial aid at that school. The student does not need to take or send the SAR or SAR Acknowledgement to a postsecondary school that already received the student's EFC and FAFSA information electronically via the ISIR.
Unless the student’s FAFSA has been rejected, the EFC is printed in the upper right corner of the front page of output documentation. In addition, there is a section for the financial aid administrator’s use, and a section of summary data from the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS®). If the student has not had any previous federal student aid, the NSLDS section will be blank.
After a FAFSA has been successfully processed (whether the application was filed electronically or via the paper/PDF FAFSA), the e-SAR can be viewed online by selecting the "View Processed Information" button on the My FAFSA page of FAFSA on the Web. The e-SAR shows the same information that appears on the paper SAR. The student may print a copy of the e-SAR for reference.
The 2023-24 SAR has been divided into portions that allow applicants to view sections one at a time. From the My FAFSA view, the applicant is taken directly to Processing Results, which has a navigation pane on the left side of the screen from which the desired SAR section may be selected and viewed.
Corrections History is another option available on the navigation pane. Applicants cannot access Corrections History directly from the My FAFSA view, and they must navigate to the SAR to see their previous transactions.
2023-24 SAR documents are printed on yellow paper.
Refer to the 2023-24 Summary of Changes for the Application Processing System document to learn about the changes to the SAR or SAR Acknowledgement. For more detailed information about each of the SAR output documents, refer to Appendix C of the 2023-24 ISIR Guide. The 2023-24 SAR Comment Codes and Text Guide includes a full listing of comment code text and description of changes.