Optional: CSS Profile Form

Topic Progress:

What's the CSS Profile Form and Do You Need It?

CSS profile home page

WHAT is it?

The CSS Profile is an online application that some private colleges, career training schools and scholarship programs use to award non-federal financial aid.  A handful of public colleges and universities also require it so check with them as well to be on the safe side.

If you need to fill out this application you would do this IN ADDITION to filling out the FAFSA.

Do I need it?

Not in most cases but you’ll need to contact the schools you’re applying to and ask them if they’ll need it. Close to 400 colleges do require you to submit it to qualify for some of their financial aid.

When do I complete it?

You can complete the CSS Profile as early as October 1st of the year prior to when you’ll be entering college, and submit it no later than 2 weeks before the EARLIEST priority filing date required by your colleges.  If you can’t find that date online then contact the school’s Financial Aid Office.

What's the Cost?

Unlike the FAFSA, the CSS Profile isn’t free (although you may qualify for a fee waiver.

  • $25 to apply which sends your results to up to 8 schools or colleges.
  • $16 for each additional school, college or organization you have it sent to.

How do I complete it?

  • Go to
  • Log in using your College Board username and password If you’ve already created one for the SAT or PSAT.
  • If don’t have an account you can create a new one by clicking the “login” button.
  • You complete the application which will require some of the same info as the FAFSA.
  • Submit and review your Dashboard for next steps.