Definitions and Acronyms

Glossary of Terms (OSAC)

AA – Associate of Arts Degree (from a 2-year community college)

AS - Associate of Science degree (from a 2-year community college)

ACT - American College Testing (a commonly-used test for college admission)

ASPIRE – Access to Student assistance Programs In Reach of Everyone

BA – Bachelor of Arts degree (from a 4-year college)

BS – Bachelor of Science degree (from a 4-year college)

CGO – College Goal Oregon (FAFSA Plus):

CIS Career Information Systems Occupational and educational information. Career guidance and employee development services. Career planning and career transition.

College Board – Organization that administers PSAT, SAT, NMSQT, etc.

COA – Cost of Attendance (at a college)

Common Application – A college application used by 700 colleges:

Early Action – Apply to find out early if you are admitted to a college or university; not binding on the student

Early Decision – An early processing of the application but also requires a commitment to enroll

EFC – Expected Family Contribution. Determines whether a student is eligible for federal aid

ECMC – Educational Credit Management Corporation: Resources regarding student loans

FAFSA – Free Application for Federal Student Aid

FSEOG – Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant

Gap Year - Taking a year off after high school before entering college. Students who take a gap year may travel, work, take classes, relax, or use opportunities to experience the world before going to college

GEAR UP – Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs: Works with middle schools and high schools to create a college-going culture

GED – General Educational Development tests

Provides the equivalent of a high school diploma when all 4 tests are passed

IB – International Baccalaureate: Two-year advanced curriculum offered by some high schools

MA - Master of Arts Degree

MBA - Master of Business Administration

MFA - Master of Fine Arts

MLS - Master of Library Science

MS - Master of Science Degree

MPN – Master Promissory Note Signed by student or parent for a federal loan

NPC – Net Price Calculator. Found on every college website. Estimates how much it cost to attend the college.

OAKS – Oregon Assessment of Knowledge and Skills:

ORSAA – Oregon State Aid Application (alternative to FAFSA for undocumented students)

OSAC – Oregon Office of Student Access and Completion: Administers state, federal, and private grants and foundations. Partners with more than 500 organizations

PhD - Doctor of Philosophy (applies to doctoral degrees in many fields of study, not just philosophy)

PSAT/NMSQT: Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. The purpose of the PSAT/NMSQT is to practice for the SAT and to qualify, if your score is high enough, for a National Merit Scholarship.

SAT: Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (generally taken in the junior year of high school; this test is also the qualifying test for National Merit Scholarships)

SAR – Student Aid Report from the FAFSA

SAP – Satisfactory Academic Progress: The standard a student must meet to keep getting federal financial aid

SAT - Scholastic Aptitude Test (a commonly-used test for college admission)

W-2 – A tax form that states how much an employee earned from his/her employer in a year