Preliminary Aid Offer

The Preliminary Financial Aid Offer will be available in the Applicant Center for prospective students to view.  Once a student’s offer has been generated, an e-mail will be sent to the home e-mail address he/she listed on the Admission’s application stating the offer is there to be viewed.   When reviewing the offer, please keep in mind the awards are an estimate based on the Cost of Attendance from the previous year as the current year's rates have not been established at this time. 

A Note about Net Cost:

When comparing the cost of JMU and other schools, we recommend you focus on the net costs versus any particular scholarship offers. For example, it's possible in some situations that the net cost of JMU without a scholarship offer could be less expensive than the net cost of another school with a scholarship offer. While scholarships are important, the net cost is the more important figure when determining what costs you will incur when attending a particular school.

Reviewing the Preliminary Aid Offer
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COVID Impacts on Income and Financial Aid

We understand many families experienced significant fluctuations in income during the pandemic. This is important information for families that experienced a temporary loss in income during 2020. If you did not experience a temporary loss of income in 2020, then the information presented below is not applicable to you.

This information is provided to help students and families understand how fluctuations in income can impact student’s need based grants and scholarships. This applies to any college or university awarding need-based financial aid with the FAFSA serving as the application to determine financial aid.

The FAFSA is the application used to determine eligibility for all need-based federal student aid, which includes the Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG), Federal Work-Study, and Federal Subsidized Direct Loan. The FAFSA is also used to determine eligibility for state grants in Virginia, such as the VGAP and Commonwealth Awards. Lastly, many schools use the FAFSA to determine eligibility for institutional need-based grants and scholarships.


The information below will help families understand how income fluctuations can impact grants and scholarships. Three important things to know about need based aid eligibility for the school year starting Fall 2022:

  1. The 2022-23 FAFSA uses income from 2020. This includes family income if the student is considered a dependent student.
  2. It is possible that students could be eligible for need based aid for the school year starting Fall 2022 due to temporary reductions in income reflected in 2020.
  3. If you experienced a sharp decline in income in 2020, and your income increased in 2021 or 2022, there is the possibility that your eligibility to receive the need-based financial aid awarded in 2022-23 and in subsequent years could be impacted. One possibility is you would no longer be eligible to receive need-based financial aid awards in future years. Another is that you may still receive need-based awards, but at a smaller amount than what was received in 2022-23.

It is important to consider this information and how it may impact your “out of pocket” educational costs in 2022-23 and beyond. Selecting a college can be a significant financial commitment, and our hope is that considering the information above can help you make the best decision possible for your family.

To see a more detailed scenario of how this may impact students, go here.

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