Current CSU students who wish to apply for Federal Student Aid (FSA) for the first time should follow these procedures.

  • Review the Preparing to Apply CSU webpage which provides a summary of important information you must know before applying for FSA.

  • Make certain you are enrolled in an eligible degree program. All programs are eligible except those listed below. If you are enrolled in one of these programs and wish to apply for financial aid, contact the Office of the Registrar at

    Programs Not Eligible for Federal Student Aid
  • If CSU does not have all official transcripts on file, you will be contacted by the Registrar’s Office and provided with information regarding the CSU Transcript Request Service. All official transcripts must be on file for students who wish to use FSA.

  • Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Make certain to indicate the Columbia Southern University school code of 041215 on the FAFSA.  If you have already completed a FAFSA, retrieve it and add the CSU school code.

  • Monitor your email for important notifications and your Student Aid Report (SAR).

  • Your FAFSA will arrive electronically at CSU within 3-5 business days. The Office of Financial Aid will review your FAFSA. Once this review is complete, you will be provided with additional instructions for completing the process.

The Federal Student Aid website contains materials, publications, and fact sheets on how to prepare and pay for college.