Who can receive an early financial aid assessment?

Macalester offers two Early Decision admission application rounds for first-year applicants who know Macalester is their first-choice college. Because students who choose Early Decision agree to enroll at Macalester if they are admitted, some may wish to know about their need-based financial aid eligibility before applying Early Decision. Early financial aid assessments allow these students to apply for financial aid and find out their need-based financial aid eligibility before choosing to apply Early Decision.

When can I apply for an early financial aid assessment?

Students who are considering Early Decision and would like an early financial aid assessment begin by completing Part 1 of the admission application. Part 1 is not a full application for admission; it consists of biographical information and provides students with log-in information to activate their Macalester application portal. Starting on September 1, students can submit an official request for an early financial aid assessment.

To receive the early financial aid assessment, financial aid application materials must be submitted between October 1 and December 15. Macalester will provide financial aid results approximately one week after receiving all financial aid application materials. Please note the admission application deadlines are November 15 for Early Decision I and January 1 for Early Decision II.

What will I learn from an early financial aid assessment?

The early financial aid assessment will report eligibility for need-based financial aid including need-based grants, student loans, and student employment. A more detailed financial aid award will be provided if the student applies for admission and is accepted, but the early financial aid assessment is a reliable, accurate preview of the financial aid that the student will receive.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to provide an early indication of eligibility for merit-based scholarships in the early financial aid assessment. Students who receive an early financial aid assessment and do not qualify for need-based financial aid will still be considered for merit-based scholarships if they apply for admission and are accepted.

How do I apply for an early financial aid assessment?

To request and apply for an early financial aid assessment, please complete the following steps. You can also review our frequently asked questions about applying for financial aid.

International students: Please note that you do not need to provide tax documents as part of your financial aid application. After completing Part 1 of the admission application and requesting an early financial aid assessment, please review the steps to apply for financial aid as an international student.

Early Financial Aid Assessment Items Timeline
Complete Part 1 of the admission application No later than December 15
Request an early financial aid assessment September 1 to December 15
CSS Profile (all biological/adoptive parents,
regardless of current marital status)
October 1 to December 15
Tax Documents (IDOC Submission) October 1 to December 15
    1. Complete Part 1 of the admission application (and activate your application portal)
      Visit macalester.edu/admissions/apply for information about completing Part 1 of the admission application. After completing Part 1, use the log-in information you receive by email to activate your application portal.
    2. Request an early financial aid assessment
      Submit an official request for an early financial aid assessment. If you apply for financial aid but have not submitted this request, the Financial Aid Office will not know that you would like to receive an early assessment.
    3. CSS Profile
      Visit cssprofile.collegeboard.org to complete the CSS Profile. Include Macalester’s code (6390) in the school release section. There is a fee associated with filing the CSS Profile, which is automatically waived for many low-income filers. Divorced/separated parents: If your biological/adoptive parents are not married and do not reside in the same household, both parents must complete separate CSS Profile applications in order for you to be considered for financial aid from Macalester. For more information about this requirement, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page. If you do not have contact with one of your biological/adoptive parents or cannot have that parent complete the CSS Profile, you can request this requirement be waived.
    4. Tax documents (IDOC Submission)
      In response to your CSS Profile (step 3 above), you will receive information from the College Board IDOC service on behalf of Macalester College. Macalester will use the IDOC service to collect tax documents and applicable supplements required to apply for financial aid from Macalester. Your IDOC information will specify which documents are required as part of your financial aid application. In general, they will include your parents’ federal tax return and W-2 forms. Parents who do not file a tax return will be asked to complete a Non-Filer Statement (provided by the IDOC service).