The federal tax law allows certain items to be deducted above-the-line to arrive at adjusted gross income (AGI). These deductions are now noted in Schedule 1 of the new form 1040.
Above-the-line deductions include things like regular IRA contributions, student loan interest deduction, and educator expenses.
Their main benefit? These deductions are allowed whether or not you use the standard deduction or itemize your other deductions.