Creating an FSA ID

The FSA ID (or federal student aid ID) is the login and electronic signature process that is used by the Department of Education. It’s needed for students, parents, and borrowers to apply for federal student aid, sign their FAFSA and access any federal student aid records online.

To sign and access the federal financial aid systems, you will need to create an FSA ID. For the FAFSA process, each student and one parent of the dependent student will need an FSA ID before completing the FAFSA.  The student and the parent do not share an FSA ID.  The FSA ID is your electronic signature and thus unique to each person.

The FSA ID login process authenticates the user and allows them to access the following websites or processes:

The FSA ID login process improves security for its users by allowing the student, parent, and borrowers to create a user-selected username and password.  The person now enters less personal information with this single sign-on process than before.  The FSA ID eliminates the need for people to enter personal identifiers such as Social Security, name and date of birth each time they want to login.  The FSA ID is a similar process to most other secure login systems used for your banking and credit cards.

Username and Password

  • Valid email address (an email that you will have in the future)
  • Username
  • Password requirement
  • Upper Case
  • Lower Case
  • Number
  • Special Character
  • Social Security Number

Creating an FSA ID requires the person to input the following information:

  1. Enter valid email address
  2. Create username and password (Need Upper case, lower case, a number, and a special character)
  3. Enter Social Security, Date of Birth and current name on Social Security
  4. Answer a series of security questions as follows:
    • 2 General Challenge Questions (System Options)
    • 2 Personal Challenge Questions (Person creates both question & answer)
    • 1 Special date (Date other than birthday)
  5. Review and confirm
  6. Email verified now by inputting 6 digits secure code (code will be sent to your email)
  7. Hit acceptance of the terms and conditions
  8. At this point, the FSA ID will be created.

Email Importance

When setting up the FSA ID, a person can decide to input their email into the system. I would suggest providing this information and keeping it updated.  If the username or password is forgotten, having a valid email will make the retrieval process easier.  The email is used for notifications and service help.  Also, a verified e-mail address can be used as your username when logging into certain U.S. Department of Education websites.  Maintaining this information can be important especially if you will have gaps in the education process.

If you decide not to include your email initially, it can be inputted later in the status section.  If a person forgets their username and password, you can still obtain this information by answering 3 of the challenge questions you put earlier into the system.   These steps are all part of the authentication process.

With the FSA ID sign up you will also be requested to verify your email.  A 6 digit code will be sent to your email which you will need to enter into the FSA ID system after it is received.  This step is just another added security change.

One other nice feature of the FSA ID is that the account can be edited easily.  A person would go to the landing page and hit edit my FSA ID.  After the username and password are entered, then the person would see their profile and hit edit in the top right of the page.  The status section would populate to the page.  The status page will show the individual when the last successful login occurred with their account.  It will also list the date when their password will expire.  The password will need to be changed every year for added security and is a reason to select an email that you will have for an extended period.


The FSA ID was designed by the Department of Education to make the process easier. Throughout the screens, icons describe what is needed in the fields required.  On the government website, families can find a list of frequently asked questions for families to review.

Here is a link to establish your FSA ID.


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