Does changing majors affect financial aid?

Yes, changing majors could affect your financial aid

Some students receive scholarships specific to their field of study. When this happens, if they decide to change majors, they would risk losing those scholarships. Not only could students lose their major-specific scholarship, depending on the terms, they could also be responsible for repaying the scholarship money.

However, changing majors shouldn’t affect your financial aid if you aren’t the recipient of major-specific scholarships.

If you remain in good standings and follow the basic eligibility criteria for financial aid, changing majors won’t necessarily affect your aid.

Keep in mind — financial aid generally has a timeline, so you need to make sure that you work with an academic advisor to map out the right plan to maximize your credit transfers into your new major. This will ensure that the maximum amount of credits that you’ve completed will be applied to your new major and degree.

Tuition rises every year, so if changing your major means more time in school, you could end up paying more out of pocket.

School costs rise every year, so you should understand what kind of impact changing your major might have regarding how long it will take you to graduate. Federal aid is only available for undergraduate students for 6-years (or up to 12-semesters). So, you could potentially increase your student debt by having to take out private loans or pay for expenses out of pocket.

When changing majors, be sure to consider all of your options.

Make sure you’ve considered all your options before making the change. Take advantage of your on-campus academic advisors. They can be a great resource and help walk you through all your options.

For example, you may think you need to change majors for a particular career, but that might not always be the case. Work with an academic advisor or someone in the career center can help you determine if the change is essential.

Keep applying for financial aid – every penny counts!

Don’t forget, the Federal Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) needs to be filed each year. Filing your application and keeping your grades up could help you continue to qualify for scholarships and grants.

Ensure you understand all of the terms for the financial aid you accept to mitigate any additional debt or out of pocket costs.  

As always, if you have any questions about financial aid or need help with your FAFSA®, the FRANK Team is here for you. You can email us at or text us at (347) 690-7886.