Participate in FAFSA Research Study With NCTC
NCTC invites our members to join us in an effort to provide streamlined Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) preparation services to our clients. Concerns about the low visibility of financial aid programs and the complexity of the application process have spurred calls to simplify the FAFSA form and enhance the visibility of programs educating students about financial aid.
To address these obstacles, NCTC is participating in a research project with the Department of Education, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), CCH Small Firm Services and a team of university researchers.
Building on the knowledge gained from a 2006-2008 H&R Block study, this new research study aims to expand the FAFSA experiment to a much larger set of potential college students across the nation over the next five years, through community VITA sites. This project will assist families in filling out and submitting the FAFSA, and will also provide participating families with information about the size of their potential financial aid awards.
To understand how these intervention components affect rates of FAFSA filing and subsequent college outcomes, an experimental research design will be employed to randomly assign participating sites to one of two groups – either a treatment group or a comparison group.
TaxWise Online will provide the tax data collection and transfer. CCH will be augmenting their online software to populate the FAFSA using current tax information for the 2013 tax season. If you would like to learn more about the research study, download the “Improving Information and Access to Financial Aid” concept paper.
NCTC is currently seeking community-based programs offering comprehensive services (including VITA and asset-building services) to low-wage workers and families. Applicants should have knowledge or experience understanding and addressing the challenges faced by low- and moderate-income, college-bound students (traditional and nontraditional).
Head to the application site to see how your organization can participate.
By Rebecca Riha, Project Manager