Next Gen FSA – FSA Partner Connect Website Launch Planned for Late March 2021 (EA ID: GENERAL-21-12)
During the December 2020 virtual training conference, Federal Student Aid (FSA) announced that FSA Partner Connect—a new portal for our community of institutional and financial partners—will launch in spring 2021. We plan to launch the FSA Partner Connect site at fsapartners.ed.gov on March 28, 2021.
In this announcement, we provide background about FSA Partner Connect and a brief summary of the new features that will be available to the community. We also provide preliminary information about our training and communication plans for the next several weeks.
What is FSA Partner Connect?
FSA Partner Connect will serve as the foundational platform for FSA’s partners, including more than 5,500 postsecondary institutions, as they navigate their participation in the Title IV student aid programs. Upon launch, FSA Partner Connect will feature—
- Knowledge Center – The Knowledge Center will replace the Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP) website. The redesigned site will offer a new look and feel, streamline information, and improve search capabilities.
- FSA Handbook – The FSA Handbook will be presented in a more user-friendly format, including both a digital version and a downloadable PDF version.
- Partner Dashboard – This feature will allow authenticated users to view a summary dashboard with snapshots of data related to their school or organization. The dashboard will include:
- partner metrics, important communications, notifications, news, and high-level operational data tailored to users based on their role, and
- quick links to FSA sites—such as the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS®) and the Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) System—that financial aid administrators regularly use to manage the aid programs. When logged in to FSA Partner Connect, the COD Online, FAA Access to CPS Online, and NSLDS websites can be accessed through a single sign-on, so users will not need to re-enter their credentials.
- Partner Search and Profile – This feature will allow authenticated users to easily search and view comprehensive and consolidated information from FSA systems for a school.
- Student, Parent, Borrower Accounts – This feature will provide authenticated users with a comprehensive and consolidated view of account information for students, parents, and/or borrowers.
- StudentAid.gov “Student View” – This feature will provide authenticated users “view-only” access to the same screens that a student or borrower associated with their organization sees when interacting with StudentAid.gov.
- Partner Role Management – This feature will allow Account Administrators to easily manage access to FSA Partner Connect for individuals within their organization. Once an individual user has been granted access, the user will be able to view and manage his or her access through the Account Access Management Center.
These features are discussed in greater detail in the 2020 FSA Training Conference presentations; we invite you to watch those presentations to learn more about the site.
Training and Additional Communication Plans
We understand the community will have questions about the FSA Partner Connect launch. In the coming weeks, we will provide additional information in the following ways:
- Training Opportunities – We are developing FSA Partner Connect training to help the financial aid community navigate the FSA Partner Connect site and use its tools and resources. Training Announcements will be posted to inform the community about these opportunities.
- Additional Electronic Announcements – Monitor the current IFAP website for additional FSA Partner Connect information throughout March 2021.
- Information Page on IFAP Website – Check out our new FSA Partner Connect Information page. This page, available at https://ifap.ed.gov/FSAPartnerConnectInformation and from the Hot Topics area on the IFAP home page, is a centralized location for communications, frequently asked questions, and training information specifically about FSA Partner Connect. It will be updated throughout March 2021.
We look forward to working with you for a successful launch.