Grants are a type of financial aid that, unlike loans, do not have to be repaid. Like scholarships, they are essentially free money — gifts — to help you pay for your education. Some grants do require that you agree to fulfill certain obligations, usually to work in a certain field for a set period of time. Most scholarships are merit-based, while grants are usually need-based awards. Most grants come from the federal or state governments, and you’ll need to fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) to be eligible.