Frequently Asked Questions

What are Stony Brook Universityís State and Federal Codes?


  • 0875 (undergraduate students)
  • 5430 (graduate students)

The state code is used when applying for TAP and other New York State programs administered by NY State Higher Education Services (HESC).

Federal: 002838

The Federal code is used when filling out the FAFSA

What is the EFC and how is it calculated?

The Expected Family Contribution, or EFC, is the amount that the student's family is expected to contribute toward the Cost of Attendance. The U.S. Department of Education uses Federal Methodology (FM) to calculate your financial aid eligibility.  FM takes into account:

  • Your family income
  • Taxes paid
  • The # of family members
  • The # of brothers and sisters in college
  • Net value of assets

How do I check the status of my TAP award?

You may log onto the HESC web site to check your award status. To check your award status on campus, self serve computers are available at the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Services.

How do I go about establishing New York State Residency?

All requests to establish residency are handled by Student Accounts.  You can read about residency requirements and download the residency questionnaire at:

How do I know when my Financial Aid Award package has been created?

A SOLAR System To Do List item will be assigned. Directions will be provided in the To Do List item detail.

How does my parent apply for a PLUS loan?

Visit our parent web page for Parent Loan process.

How will I know when my financial aid awards will disburse?

  • Log into the Solar System.
  • Click Financial Aid which can be found in the Student Financial Services section.
  • Click View & Accept Decline FinAid.
  • Click the appropriate Aid Year.
  • Scroll to the term in question.
  • Click View Scheduled Disbursements.

Why hasn't my student loan disbursed?

  • You have not accepted the loan on the Solar System.
  • You have not taken care of required To Do List items.
  • Log into the Solar System to view your To Do List items.
  • You have not signed your Master Promissory Note (MPN).

How will I know when I need to sign a Master Promissory Note? 

This information will be displayed as a To Do List item on your Solar System Account.  Specific directions will be provided in the To Do List detail.

What is the difference between a Federal Direct Subsidized loan and a Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan?

  • Subsidized loan - Interest is paid for by the federal government while the student is enrolled in school.
  • Unsubsidized loan - Student is responsible for interest during the life of the loan, even while enrolled in school. Student can elect to pay the interest while in school or they may choose to allow the interest to accrue (accumulate) and capitalize (add to the principal amount of the loan). Capitalizing the interest will increase the amount of loan when in repayment.

Where do I go to pick up a refund check?

The Bursar's Office introduces a convenient program for processing student refunds. Through direct deposit, they will deposit any student refund into the financial institution of your choice. Electronic deposits are secure, fast and convenient and you can avoid waiting to receive your refund check at the counter or in the mail. Enrollment is done via the SOLAR system. To enroll, log into SOLAR > Student Financial Services > Account Information/Payment > Direct Deposit > Add Account > Complete the Panel > Save. At any point during the term you may edit or delete this direct deposit refund option. Refund checks are printed weekly. Refunds through direct deposit are processed daily.

How are Federal Work-Study funds awarded?

Federal Work-Study is a form of need based aid. In order to be considered for this program you must file your FAFSA by the University priority filing date. Since there is only a limited amount of funds available, students are encouraged to file their FAFSA as early as possible.

How do I find an on campus job?

A great way to find a job is by attending the annual job expo. This event occurs the first or second Wednesday of the fall term. Information on this and all other University events will be posted on the University Calendar of Events web site A complete listing of all on-campus jobs is available on the Career Center Website. You are welcome to use the computers in the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Services to begin your search.

How can I find out about financial aid for a Study Abroad program I am considering?

Visit the Financial Aid Study Abroad web page for detailed information.

I am currently considered a dependent student when applying for federal student aid, but due to extenuating circumstances, I feel that I should be considered independent. How do I go about requesting a dependency override?

  • File your FAFSA.
  • Carefully review and follow the directions in the Dependency Status section of the FAFSA.
  • Continue to log into SOLAR to monitor your To Do List. We will let you know specifically what documentation you will need to submit.
  • DO NOT submit documentation (including personal letters of explanation) until we ask for it.

How do I go about requesting a Re-evaluation if I am a dependent student and my parent(s) financial situation has changed significantly, or, if I am an independent student and my financial situation has changed, and this change was not reflected on my FAFSA application?

For complete instructions and forms please visit the Request for Re-evaluation page on our web site.

I need proof of enrollment to qualify for an in-school deferment or to provide to my parentís health insurance provider. How can I get this form?

Log into the Solar System. Click Enrollment under the Student Records & Registration section. Click Enrollment Verification. This document should be sent to your lender or loan servicer

How can I get advice on loan consolidation?

If you need information on loan consolidation the best place to look for information is on the Federal Student Aid Web Site.

Would a student with an immigration status of Deferred Action be eligible for federal or state financial aid?

Students with a status of deferred action are not eligible to receive federal or state aid. However, they will be considered for University merit based scholarships upon admission to Stony Brook. To read more about deferred action please visit our Visa and Immigration Services page.