Loan types Loan types

There are a number of loans available to US students studying at UEA; Federal Direct Stafford Loans, Federal Direct PLUS Loans and Private Loans (via Sallie Mae). A detailed comparison of Federal and Private Loans is published on the Federal Student Aid website.

Federal Direct Stafford Loans:

Subsidised Stafford Loan - A Subsidised Loan is available to undergraduate students and is based on your financial need. If you are eligible, the US government pays interest on the loan while you are studying at least half-time, and for the six-month grace period after you leave UEA. The US government also pays the interest during any authorised period of deferment (a postponement of loan payments).

Unsubsidised Stafford Loan - An Unsubsidised Loan is available to both undergraduate and graduate students and is not based on your financial need. Interest accrues whilst you are studying, until it is repaid in full. The interest may be paid as it is due, or it may be postponed and allowed to accumulate while you are enrolled at least half-time at UEA, during any authorised period of intercalation or deferment, and for the six-month grace period after you leave UEA.

Federal Direct PLUS Loans:

Graduate PLUS Loan - The Graduate PLUS Loan is available to students enrolled at least half-time on a graduate degree programme. The Graduate PLUS Loan can be the difference between the Unsubsidised Loan and the Cost of Attendance minus any other financial aid received (i.e. scholarships). Interest accrues whilst you are studying, until it is repaid in full. The interest may be paid as it is due, or it may be postponed and allowed to accumulate while you are enrolled at least half-time at UEA, and for the six-month grace period after you leave UEA, or drop below half-time enrolment. 

A credit check will be performed during the application process.  If you have an adverse credit history, you may be able to obtain a suitable endorser allowing you to obtain the loan.

Parent PLUS Loan - Parents of dependent undergraduate students can take out a Parent PLUS Loan in their name on behalf of their child. The Parent PLUS Loan can be the difference between the Subsidised and Unsubsidised Loans and the Cost of Attendance minus any other financial aid received (i.e. scholarships). As a parent borrower, you’ll generally be expected to start making payments on your Parent PLUS Loan once your loan is fully disbursed. However, you may request for this to be postponed whilst your child is enrolled at least half-time and for an additional six months after your child graduates, leaves school, or drops below half-time enrolment.

A credit check will be performed during the application process.  If you have an adverse credit history, you may be able to obtain a suitable endorser allowing you to obtain the loan. The endorser cannot be the child on whose behalf you are borrowing.

Sallie Mae Smart Loan:

Sallie Mae is the only private loan currently available to US students at foreign schools. This option is available to all students, although some students may require a co-signer. Loans are based upon credit history and interest rates will vary.

As Federal Loans detailed above generally have more favourable terms and conditions than private loans, we suggest that you check interest rates, compare terms and conditions and thoroughly investigate the possibility of taking out a Federal Loan before applying for a private loan.

Please refer to our Sallie Mae Private Loan tab for more information on this loan option.