EXPECTED FAMILY CONTRIBUTION (EFC)
Financing an education is a partnership between the student, their family, federal and state aid programs and UC Santa Cruz. The expected family contribution is the amount that the student and their parent(s) are expected to contribute toward the cost of education. It is calculated each year using a federal need-analysis formula which considers income, asset, and other information reported on the FAFSA. In addition to the EFC, UC students are expected to earn and borrow part of their costs each year.
Please see additional information for students and/or parents who are in a California Registered Domestic Partnership.
If you can answer No to all of the following questions, you are considered a dependent student and must submit parent information on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA):
- Were you born before January 1, 1988?
- As of today are you married?
- At the beginning of the 2011-2012 school year, will you be working on a master's or doctorate program (such as an MA, MBA, MD, JD, PhD, EdD, or graduate certificate, etc.)?
- Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?
- Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?
- Do you have children who will receive more than half of their support from you between July 1, 2011 and June 30, 2012?
- Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) who live with you and who receive more than half of their support from you, now and through June 30, 2012?
- At any time since you turned age 13, were both your parents deceased, were you in foster care or were you a dependent or ward of the court?
- As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, are you or were you an emancipated minor?
- As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, are you or were you in legal guardianship?
- At any time on or after July 1, 2010, did your high school or school district homeless liaison determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?
- At any time on or after July 1, 2010, did the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?
- At any time on or after July 1, 2010, did the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at risk of being homeless?
- If you are considered a dependent student, your parents must answer the parental questions on the FAFSA.
If you can answer Yes to any of the questions above, you are considered an independent student and information about your parents is not required on the FAFSA .
SPECIAL FINANCIAL CIRCUMSTANCESIf you or your family have unusual financial circumstances which were not reflected on your FAFSA, please refer to our appeals page for information about what to submit to the office to document your circumstance. Examples of financial circumstances we will consider include:
- high family medical costs not covered by insurance
- loss of income due to layoff, involuntary loss of employment
- major repairs after a natural disaster.
Note: High mortgage costs, credit card/consumer debt, and other discretionary expenses incurred in many households will not be considered in our evaluation of your eligibility for financial aid.