The Minister for Social Protection has said it is her understanding that of the 65,000 students who applied for grants online, around 50,000 applications had to be queried because of incomplete data.
SUSI, a new online system implemented by Government to speed up the application process, has only granted every one in 16 applications so far.
Joan Burton said it was vital that students made sure they provided all the relevant information and documentation when filling out the application form.
"What I'm hearing is something that's a feature of many new computer applicaions, and that is that unless people complete all of the information that's required, the system will reject it as an incomplete application, so it has to go back to people for more information," she said.
Earlier, John Logue from the Union of Students of Ireland said some students could be waiting until the New Year to receive their college grants, due to delays in decisions on applications.
"The first few months of the year in college are where the bills stack up," he said. "You have your deposit for your accommodation and the books and the tools you need to buy…It's the most vulnerable time for people," he said.
He added the delays in the awarding of grants was "just a scandalous situation".