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Future Undergraduate Students

Did you know that approximately 70% of all UNC students receive some form of financial aid assistance? Understanding the financial aid process is an important step toward fulfilling your educational goals. Take the first step to receiving financial aid by filing your FAFSA. Learn more about all your options and completing your next steps by reviewing the below information.

For a quick review of aid, view our scholarship guides.

English financial aid guide thumbnail

Financial Aid and Scholarship Guide

Learn about your eligibility, how to apply, and how to interpret your financial award. Deadlines and FAQ included.

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Spanish Financial Aid & Scholarship Guide

Aprende sobre su elegibilidad, como solicitar, y como interpretar su premio financiero.

Transfer Students

If you are transferring to the University of Northern Colorado from another college, you should:

  • Let your former school know about the transfer as soon as possible so they can cancel any processed aid. Please be aware that aid from one school to another can vary greatly, due to differing costs of attendance, award requirements, etc.
  • Request that your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) data be sent to UNC. This may be done by adding the appropriate school code to the FAFSA online (www.fafsa.gov) or by calling 1-800-433-3243. UNC’s school code is 001349.
  • Notify donors of any scholarships or grants from outside sources of your transfer so they can send future disbursements to the correct school.

DREAMer (undocumented/DACA) Students

To verify if you are ASSET eligible, and to find out more about resources we offer DREAMers, please look at our DREAMer at UNC Brochure (ENGLISH VERSION or SPANISH VERSION) and contact Rudy Vargas, Enrollment Coach and Recruiter at Rodolfo.Vargas@unco.edu or (970)-351-3397. For more information:


In addition to the UNC scholarship application, UNC does offer limited financial aid to students who meet the following criteria:

  • Officially admitted to a degree seeking program
  • Asset Eligible as based on the 2013 State of Colorado Asset Bill
  • Determined Financially needy based upon the completion of the State of Colorado CASFA

Financial Aid Steps for All Future Undergraduate Students

  • File your FAFSA

    Your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) will need to be completed for the upcoming academic year to receive aid. Tax information and dependent/independent status will be needed to determine the maximum amount of aid you are eligible for. Remember the FAFSA is a free application. Stay away from sites requesting payment for completing the application.

    To complete the FAFSA:


    Have your Federal Student Aid ID (FSA ID) ready


    Use UNC’s School Code 001349


    IRS Data Retrieval consent is now required for 2024-25.


    Apply at fafsa.gov

    Submit the FAFSA by the June 1 priority deadline to maximize your amount of aid you receive. You should use your 2021 tax information for the 2023-24 (spring/summer 2024) academic year. You should use your 2022 tax information for the 2024-25 (fall 2024 and spring/summer 2025) academic year If you have not filed your taxes for 2022, you should contact the Office of Financial Aid.

    You will receive a confirmation email from the U.S. Department of Education with your Student Aid Report (SAR). Make sure to verify that all of your information is correct. If you need to make corrections, you may do this online at www.fafsa.gov. Be sure to check your spam folder for your FAFSA confirmation if you did not receive it within a week.

    Students may submit documentation of any unusual or extenuating circumstances not reflected on the FAFSA . Contact a the Office of Financial Aid for more information on this process.

    Helpful Links for Applying 


    As you begin the process of applying for financial aid for the academic year, the UNC Office of Financial Aid offers these tips.


    Details on completing the FAFSA.


    If you have been selected for FAFSA verification, you'll need to complete these steps before UNC can process your aid.

    Federal Aid resources

    Online  resources from the Department of Education.

  • Applying for Scholarships

    UNC Scholarship Application
    Your University of Northern Colorado admission application serves as an application serves as an application for a number of admission-based scholarships. In addition, you may submit the UNC scholarship application to be considered for other scholarships. The UNC Scholarship Application opens early January each year. The UNC Scholarship Application can also be found under the Financial tab in Ursa. Use this quick and easy application to apply for scholarships catered towards UNC students of different backgrounds, majors, etc.

    UNC Scholarship Application Important Deadlines

    February 1: Deadline for incoming freshmen
    June 15: Deadline for transfer, graduate and international students.
    Find UNC Scholarships.

    There are also various scholarship resources outside of UNC and the government that students and families should consider helping fund college. Here’s a list of scholarship resources:

    Important note: You should report outside scholarships or assistance to the Office of Financial Aid by contacting the Office of Financial Aid directly.


  • Applying and Receiving College Opportunity Fund (COF) Stipend

    If you are a Colorado resident make it a top priority to apply for the College Opportunity Fund (COF) stipend. The fund was established by the Colorado legislature to reduce the cost of tuition for Colorado resident undergraduate students.

    If you do not apply for the stipend, then you will pay a higher tuition rate. Check your student bill in late August to see the stipend.

  • Complete Parent Loan (optional)

    Federal PLUS loans are offered to parents of dependent students. UNC requires that parents/students file the FAFSA to determine eligibility for this loan. These loans are equal to the cost of attendance minus other aid that the student accepts. Parents are not obligated to accept a PLUS loan, or can adjust the amount they wish to borrow, but a student can only borrow an additional unsubsidized Stafford Loan if the parent applies for the PLUS and is denied by the U.S. Department of Education.

  • Complete the Loan Entrance Interview and Master Promissory Note (MPN).

    In an effort to reduce the default rate for student loans, the U.S. Department of Education requires all first time borrowers to complete an online entrance counseling session. Once you have received your official award letter (early March), the next step to receive your loan is to complete the following Entrance Interview and MPN:

    Once you have completed this, UNC will receive notification that this requirement has been completed. Loan proceeds may be available in three working days, provided that all other disbursement requirements have been met.

  • Checking your Ursa and BearMail Accounts

    Ursa is your student account that will detail information such as financial aid, credit requirements, and GPA. Be sure to check your BearMail account to view all UNC emails. The Office of Financial Aid will send your award email and information to your BearMail account.

    You’ll receive your financial aid award letter in early March, so keep checking your BearMail and Ursa accounts.

  • Accepting or Declining your Aid on Ursa

    If you have completed all required paperwork, after the first week of March, you should be able to accept or decline your aid offer.

    Accepting, Reviewing or Declining Your Aid:
    1. Log in to Ursa at ursa.unco.edu.
    2. Select "Financial" tab and click "View/Accept Award Offer".
    a. Select "Select Award Year" drop-down menu at the top right of the page to select year.
    3. Your financial aid offer is available below the "Cost of Attendance on the Award Offer".
    4. "Take Action" column and pick from the "Select" drop-down menu to accept, decline or modify.
    5. If you choose to modify, you may have the option to accept both or one of the terms, as well as change the amount to a lesser value.
    6. Once you have accepted, declined or modified your aid, confirm your selection by clicking either the "Submit" or "Confirm" button at the bottom.
    a. Click the "I acknowledge these terms and conditions" button at the very bottom of the Terms and Conditions. This will turn the "Accept Award" button to blue, and you will be able to click to complete.
    7. Click the "Home" tab. Any outstanding requirements will be listed on this tab. Outstanding requirements will need to be completed prior to aid paying out.

    • If you mistakenly accept or decline certain loans on your account and you want to change your award letter, please email the office at ofa@unco.edu with your name, bear number and what loan and amount you want to accept or decline. Your request will be processed within 3-5 business days.

    Notice: If you have NEVER borrowed Federal Direct Stafford loans with UNC before, you will need to complete some additional steps at StudentLoans.gov such as; the Federal Direct Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling and the Master Promissory Note (MPN).

  • Enroll in Direct Deposit

    Direct Deposit is the most convenient way to receive your financial aid. This process can be done in person or online. To set up direct deposit:

    • Bring a voided check or Direct Deposit Letter from your bank and the completed form below to the Card Office at the University Center.
    • Download the Direct Deposit form
  • Viewing your Bill

    Your student bill can be viewed on Ursa under the “Financial” tab.  Located on the top left, the account balances for your terms at UNC can be seen; at the bottom will be your account balance. Click on each term to see a detailed list of term credits and payments.

    Learn more about reading your bill.

    Pay your Bill

    Tuition and fees billing is processed by the Bursar Office located at Bear Central in the Campus Commons.

    There are 3 options to pay your bill:

    1. Pay your bill over the phone with Visa, MasterCard, or Discover/other Novus Card by calling 970-351-4862. 
    2. Send a payment to:
      University of Northern Colorado
      Cashier’s Office, Campus Box 14
      Greeley, CO 80639
    3. Pay online: Go to Ursa, access the Student Tab and navigate to My Account.

     For more information, visit Accounts Receivable on the Bursar’s Office website or read about the Bursar's Office policies regarding billings and student accounts.

    Bear Pay

    UNC’s monthly pay plan allows you to pay your bill in easy monthly installments rather than in one lump sum. This plan includes your tuition, room and board, and all university fees.

    Learn more about Bear Pay.


  • Work Study and Student Employment

    UNC offers many places to work on-campus. A list can be found here. Aside from offering hourly-paid jobs, UNC offers work-study employment. Work-study is awarded to students based on their financial need. It is only accepted at locations on-campus that have work-study positions.

    For more information on work study, visit our UNC Student Employment page.

  • Determining Your Costs

    For the purposes of determining financial aid, our office follows the Colorado Department of Higher Education (CDHE) and federal guidelines to develop an estimated, average cost of attendance (budget) for different student classifications (commuter/non-commuter, undergraduate/graduate, resident/nonresident, etc.).

    Budgets include estimated figures for tuition and mandatory fees as well as estimated averages for room and board, books and supplies, transportation, and personal (miscellaneous) expenses.

    The tuition cost for an undergraduate Colorado resident includes only the student share of tuition. The College Opportunity Fund (COF) pays a portion of your tuition. Be sure to apply for the College Opportunity Fund stipend (COF).

    View Estimated Costs Information

  • Maintaining Your Aid 

    warningStandards of Satisfactory Academic Progress

    Federal regulations require that the University of Northern Colorado establish a policy to monitor the academic progress of students who apply for and receive financial aid. Students must be making satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward their academic program in order to maintain their eligibility for financial aid.

    The Standards for SAP and the associated policies may have changed for the next academic year. All students need to read this material carefully, and direct any questions to the Office of Financial Aid at 970-351-4862.

     SAP policy

    Please note: Academic Suspension appeals policy expectations differ from the Financial Aid Ineligibility Appeal Policy and have a separate application process. View instructions for academic appeal.