2 years ago
Admissions Advice

How does college rank work in negotiating financial aid?

If I wanted to negotiate financial aid offers between schools in order to raise one in particular would I compare schools at the same rank?

or if i wanted to raise a financial aid offer from a lower ranked school could I compare it to a higher ranked school’s offer? for example if i were accepted to Michigan (ranked #84) and Auburn (#104) but really wanted to go to Auburn, could i compare my financial aid offer from Michigan with Auburn in order for them to raise their offer?


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1 answer

2 years ago

I’m no expert and that’s who you need to ask but typically you get high aid/low cost of attendance from lower ranked or about equal ranked schools. Also private schools are who you should negotiate with. I’d never show my Harvard’s finicial aid to Florida St Kansas Oregon etc. I’ve heard 2nd hand accounts of students negotiate with Yale and Princeton and “play them against one another.

In regards to auburn to Michigan I’d use Auburn’s offer at Michigan not vice versa as auburn can’t match Michigan’s prestige. I’d say this is very rule of thumb-y. The lower ranked school has sometimes matched a higher ranked school to get more prestigious themselves but you’d have to be top 25% for that to even be a thought.

Again this is what I know and my opinion so I hope this is correct.

Hope this helps and please comment if you need clarification.

PS: Also CV offers the service advocate to help negotiate aid but that requires you to be accepted and have aid amounts awarded.


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