Glossary


Have you come across a word in the program descriptions and you're not sure what it means? Use the glossary below for a short definition.

Cost of Attendance (COA) - Total amount it will cost you to go to school (includes tuition, fees and estimated personal expenses).

Credit hour- The number of hours assigned to a course, which often reflects the approximate amount of time spent in class per week. 

Expected Family Contribution (EFC) - An estimate of parents' and/or students' ability to contribute to post-secondary expenses. In general, the lower the EFC, the higher the financial aid.

FAFSA - The common name for the free application for federal student aid form prepared annually to determine eligibility for post-secondary financial aid.

Federal Work-Study - A federal program that provides part-time employment opportunities for students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to help pay educational expenses.

Financial need - The difference between the cost of attending a particular school and the expected family contribution.

First-Generation College Student- A student who neither parent nor guradian have earned a 4-year degree

Freshman- A first-year college student, or ont that has earned fewer than 30 credit hours

Full-Time Student (undergraduate)- A student enrolled in at least 12 credit hours during the fall/spring semester

Grant - Financial awards based on need and generally do not need to be repaid. These awards typically come from federal, state, or university sources.

Junior- An undergraduate college student that has earned at least 90 credit hours

Loan (Subsidized) - A need-based loan from the federal government, the interest of which is paid for by the U.S. Department of Education while the borrower is in school and during grace and deferment periods.

Loan (Unsubsidized) - A non-need-based loan from the federal government the interest of which is paid for by the borrower.

Major- The Concentration of courses required to earn a degree. For example, a biology major is pursuing a degree in biology and will take courses oriented to that area of interest

Master's Degree/ Graduate Work- a degree completed after your bachelor's degree; most commonly involves more extensive research in your area of study; commonly completed in two years

Mixed Status Family- a family or guardian structure that includes members with different immigration statuses.

Pell Eligible- Determined by completing the FAFSA, this is a grant awarded to undergraduate students that demonstrate financial need. This is money that does not have to be paid back.

Scholarship - Money awarded to students to help pay for educational expenses that does not have to be repaid and is based on academic or other achievements.

Senior- An undergraduate college student that has earned more than 90 credit hours

Sophomore- An undergraduate college student that has earned more than 30 and fewer than 60 credit hours

Student of Color/ Minority Student- A student that identifies African American (Black), Hispanic, Native American, Asian and/or a mix of the aforementioned racial identities

Transfer Student- A college student who completed courses at another college or university before enrolling at the University of Kansas and is transferring 30 or more credit hours when they start at KU

Undergraduate Student- A student who is pursing, but has not yet received a bachelor's degree

Underrepresented Student- refers to a student that is underrepresented in college or a certain field. This includes first-generation college students, minority students or students of color, LGBTQIA+ in some fields this also includes women

Undocumented student or DREAMER- a student who lives in the United States but who does not have official legal status as either a citizen or as a permanent resident