Some 200 students at the University of Colorado may have received incorrect financial aid information due to a glitch in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid form, better known as the FAFSA.

The online form asks for detailed financial information to determine what types of aid students qualify for, both from the federal government and from individual colleges and universities.

The form asks students to report their income earned from work to the nearest whole-dollar amount. But some students reported their exact income down to the penny, and the online form did not catch their mistake.

An applicant who reported earning $5,000.19 would have been recorded as earning $500,019, a mistake that may have rendered them ineligible for the Pell Grant and other aid.

In a statement , U.S. Department of Education officials acknowledged the scale of the error.

"Our initial analysis is that fewer than 200,000 applicants are affected nationwide, with 63 percent of our institutions having fewer than 10 applicants each and another 31 percent having between 10 and 100 applicants each," wrote Lisa DiCarlo, director of the student experience group for federal student aid and Jeff Baker, director of policy liaison and implementation for federal student aid.

"The remaining six percent will have more than 100 applicants each. In general, schools with higher numbers of affected applicants will be those with higher numbers of FAFSA applicants."

On July 1, the education department made changes to the online form to make it clearer to students how they should enter their income.

But some students who applied to CU or already attend the university had submitted the form incorrectly before the fix.

They will be contacted individually by the financial aid office and their information will be reprocessed, said Gwen Pomper, assistant vice chancellor of enrollment services and director of financial aid.

"We're working to verify what the correct data should be and get those turned around as quickly as we can," Pomper said. "We want to make sure this happens prior to the start of the fall semester."

Classes begin on the Boulder campus on Aug. 25.

Pomper explained that the federal government uses the FAFSA to determine if students are eligible for the Pell Grant, an award based on financial need that does not have to be repaid. The maximum award for the 2014-2015 school year is $5,730, according to the education department's website.

Individual colleges and universities also use the FAFSA to determine what types of institutional aid students may be eligible for, Pomper explained.

Some students might see drastic changes to their financial aid packages, while others will see little change, Pomper said.

"Obviously financial aid is going to help cover the cost of attendance, and families make decisions based on that," Pomper said. "We want to make sure that families have good information to make sure they're making good decisions in the fall."

Contact Camera Staff Writer Sarah Kuta at 303-473-1106 or