Undergraduate Business: Institutional Eligibility
The primary objective of the Undergraduate Business financial aid program is to assist as many students as possible by using a combination of available funds. Need based aid policies are based on the belief that the primary responsibility for financing educational costs lies with the family, to the extent they are able.
Emory uses information supplied on the PROFILE application when determining eligibility for institutional aid. If you complete your application by our published deadlines, adequate funds are available to meet your eligibility in Fall and Spring terms. However, if you apply late, you will be awarded aid only if funds are available. An application is not complete until all required documentation is submitted. Please review the required documents and associated deadlines under How To Apply.
Your responses from the PROFILE application are used to arrive at an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) using Institutional Methodology (IM). Institutional Methodology is a formula developed by financial aid professionals, in consultation with economists, to measure a family's ability to pay for college. The result of the formula is an expected family contribution--the family's share of college costs. The EFC produced by the IM is not the same as the figure calculated by the federal government to determine eligibility for federal student aid dollars.
IM assumes a family's capacity to pay is a function of income and assets. After subtracting appropriate allowances from income and from assets, a portion of the remainder is available to pay college costs. The basic equation used to determine a student's financial aid eligibility or "need" is as follows:
What family resources are considered in the expected family contribution under institutional methodology?
IM uses adjusted gross income (AGI) from the federal income tax form as a basis to determine family income. Untaxed income from social security, child support, and other sources is also considered in determining a family's total income. Both the parents' and the student's incomes are taken into account.
If parents are divorced or separated, information from the custodial parent (the parent with whom the student lives) and information from the custodial parent's spouse (if remarried) is used to calculate expected family contribution. Emory requires financial information from both biological parents without regard to their marital status.
IM subtracts the following six allowances from income:
Mandatory taxes: Federal income taxes paid. Allowance for state and local income, sales, and property taxes. FICA tax.
Medical and dental expense allowance to account for exceptionally high medical and dental expenses reported by the family on Schedule A of the tax return
Employment expense allowance to account for expenses related to working outside the home if both parents are employed or if the parent is single
Annual Education Savings Allowance (AESA) recognizes that a family must save for the educational expenses of younger children at the same time they are sending older children to college. The allowance is designed so that families that save the specified portion of their income each year (about 1.5 percent up to a maximum of $1,800) will have saved about one third of their expected parent contribution for a private four year college by the time their child enrolls. IM assumes that the family will finance the remaining expected contribution from current income, assets, and/or borrowing.
Income Protection Allowance (IPA) represents the median expenses of families living at the lower living standard defined by the U.S. Department of Commerce. It represents the income level below which a family has no discretion about how it spends its income. Parents with incomes at or below the IPA are not asked to make any contribution at all to their children's educational costs. Those with higher incomes have more choices about how they spend their income and are expected to use some fraction of their discretionary income to pay for their children's education.
Elementary/Secondary Tuition Allowance to account for expenses paid by the family for private elementary or secondary school tuition.
IM considers assets in determining a family's ability to pay for education. Families with assets are in a stronger financial position than families with the same income but no assets. A family's expected contribution is somewhat higher if there are assets than it would be if the family had not saved at all. IM considers only a very small percentage of a family's assets as available to pay for college.
Savings and investments, including parents' assets held in the names of the student's siblings, are taken into account, as is the equity in other financial assets such as the home, other real estate, and business and farm assets.
Two major allowances--Emergency Reserve Allowance and Cumulative Education Savings Protection Allowance--are subtracted from assets before determining how much of a family's net worth should be available to pay for college expenses.
Emergency Reserve Allowance (ERA) protects assets for unanticipated expenses such as illness or unemployment. The amount is based on family size and represents six months of average family expenses as reported in the federal Consumer Expenditure Survey.
Cumulative Education Savings Protection Allowance (CESA) recognizes a family's need to save to finance their children's college expenses. The CESA protects an amount of assets equal to the amount the family would have accumulated if they had saved a specified percentage of their income each year for each child.
The final determination of eligibility and awarding rests with the financial aid administrator and is based upon uniform and consistent treatment of family circumstances and availability of funds.
Changes in Circumstances
Emory may consider extenuating circumstances. These circumstances could include your family's unusual medical expenses, tuition expenses, or unemployment. Your requests for adjustments must be submitted in writing and include adequate documentation supporting the special circumstance.
568 Presidents' Group - Consensus Approach To Need Analysis
In an effort to make higher education more accessible, Emory University, along with 27 other leading colleges and universities, affirms their commitment to need based aid and endorses a set of principles for the fair determination of a family’s ability to contribute to educational costs. This group of schools, known as the 568 Presidents’ Group, adopted a “Consensus Approach to Need Analysis” to address the need for clarity, simplicity and fairness in the process of assessing each family’s ability to pay for college. All institutions in the group are committed to admitting students regardless of their financial resources and have agreed upon the following financial aid principles:
- To the extent they are able, parents and students have the primary responsibility to contribute to educational expenses before an institution awards financial aid.
- Families should contribute to educational expenses according to their ability. Those with similar financial profiles should contribute similar amounts.
- Institutions should evaluate both income and assets as part of the assessment of the parents’ and applicants’ ability to pay.
- Each institution should inform applicants about the policies and practices it applies when measuring a family’s ability to pay, carry out its policies consistently throughout a student’s eligibility, and support the awarding of need-based aid.
- An institution that allocates any financial assistance that is not based exclusively on need should inform all prospective applicants of the standards it applies in allocating that aid.
- The exercise of “professional judgment” by financial aid officers in assessing a family’s ability to pay should recognize unique or extenuating financial circumstances in individual cases; such professional judgment is not the proper mechanism for systematically treating groups of students differently in order to advance institutional objectives.
In addition to common need analysis and professional judgment standards, the group included a standard list of documentation needed from applicants and a common calendar for the collection of this data from families.