Understanding the 2012-2013 Pell Grant Amount

It is important to understand what the Pell Grant amount is for the 2012-2013 school year before you start planning on receiving any sort of aid as a result of this federal award. The great thing is that the maximum Pell Grant amount has remained the same for the 2012-2013 school year, and is currently set at an all-time high.

More specifically, the maximum amount that you can receive if you are attending class on a full-time basis is now set at 5,550 dollars per year, or 2,775 dollars per semester. This is a 200 dollar increase from the previous year, and while this may not seem like much, it is still a significant amount of money if you exhibit a considerable financial need for aid to attend college.

Maximum and Minimum Amounts

The other Pell Grant amounts that you should be concerned with are the maximum and minimum amounts that you can potentially receive with regard to your enrollment status. The Pell Grant is now disbursed regardless of whether you are going to school on a full-time, or part-time basis, and the amount of aid you receive will heavily depend upon the number of credit-hours you are attempting for that award year.

The following contains both maximum and minimum award amounts with regard to enrollment status:

  • Full-time: 5,550 | 577
  • 3/4 time: 4,163 | 563
  • 1/2 time: 2,775 | 575
  • 1/4 time: 1,388 | 563

Award amounts are in USD, and are arranged as maximum, and minimum amounts.

Determining Your Final Amount

Once they get a hold of your FAFSA, and the rest of your application package your school’s financial aid department will use a variety of predefined formulas to produce the final award amount that will be disbursed to you. The information that they will typically plug in to these formulas consists of your EFC, cost of attendance, and enrollment status.

As far as your EFC goes, the lower your EFC is, the better your chances are at receiving the full amount, with EFC values at zero almost always qualifying for the entire amount. The higher it costs to attend your college, the greater your likelihood of receiving more aid by way of the Pell Grant, as this is commonly referred to as your cost of attendance by financial aid people.

Finally your enrollment status will play a role by fractionally prorating the amount you are able to receive in regards to the number of credit-hours you are taking for that particular semester. This means that you will still be able to get some aid even if you aren’t taking a full schedule, and you can even receive some Pell Grant aid if you are only taking one or two classes as long as you can go ahead and satisfy all of the other eligibility requirements. Keep in mind that the majority of students don’t get approved for the full Pell Grant amount, and on average most students receive about half of the maximum amount that is available for that school year.

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