We have compiled a few of the questions we are frequently asked about US Financial Aid.

Please contact us if you have any further questions. 

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You must apply for your US loan each year. Please follow the instructions on our How to Apply page.

Did you add the University of East Anglia as one of your chosen institutions on your FAFSA and state our federal school code (G10915) If you did not add this information, you can make this amendment by going to fafsa.gov:

Click on the "Login" button and provide the information requested to get into your account.

On the My FAFSA page, click “Make FAFSA Corrections.”

Enter your FSA ID (username and password).

Change your information.

Submit your new information.

If you have not heard anything from UEA a week after submitting your FAFSA and you added UEA as a chosen institution, please contact us at usfinaid@uea.ac.uk

You can complete your FAFSA from 1 October in the year before you will start your studies at UEA. We usually begin processing loans for the new September academic year in April. We assess your FAFSA and email your Offer of Funds letter to you, which is how much we can offer you in federal loans for that year.

When all the required documentation has been completed, we will originate your loan (any time after 1st July) on the US Department of Education System. Once the loan is approved we will issue you with your official Financial Aid Package (FAP) award letter which will tell you how much you will receive in loans and when you will receive them. This letter will be sufficient for proof of your loan amounts for the academic year for the purposes of applying for your visa.

For more information about applying for a Student visa, please see the Home Office website.

PLEASE NOTE: Any application for Financial Aid being received within the month prior to your course start date, cannot be guaranteed to be processed in time for the start of the course, or to provide the required documentation for any visa.

EFC stands for 'expected family contribution' and is shown on your Student Aid Report (SAR) which is generated once you complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The EFC is used to determine 'need' and therefore it limits the amount that you can borrow for a Direct Subsidised loan; it is not required for graduate loan applications as this loan type is not available to graduates.  You may still borrow up to the full cost of attendance, even if you have a high EFC, using the Unsubsidised and PLUS.  Please note that although the EFC stands for 'expected family contribution', essentially it is used to determine financial need, rather than reflecting whether or not your family will be contributing to the cost of your studies.  The EFC cannot be amended by the University if your family are not contributing to your studies.

COA refers to the costs of completing your study at UEA for one academic year.  COA includes cost such as: tuition fees, accommodation fees, living costs, transport expenses, visa, IHS and loan origination fees. The maximum COA you are offered is set by UEA but you are then encouraged to look at the individual costs within the COA Detail of Costs you are sent and reduce any areas that do not apply to you, therefore tailoring your FSA loan to you. The COA, minus any other financial support you may be receiving (such as scholarships), is used to calculate the level of FSA loan funds that you are eligible to borrow. Please look in our How to Apply section for more on COA.

For the current academic year, UEA will refer to the current exchange rate to calculate the cost of attendance. However, the actual amount that you will receive in GBP(£) will depend upon the exchange rate available to UEA’s bank (or currency exchange service provider) on the date that the loan funds are disbursed.

This is the fee charged by the US Department of Education to cover initial administrative charges related to Federal Loans. Please see Loan Amounts for more information.

Entrance and exit counselling are short online courses which will help you understand the rights, responsibilities and obligations associated with Federal Student Aid. It is a US Department of Education requirement that you undertake entrance and exit counselling (accessed at StudentAid.gov). 

Entrance counselling must be completed during the application process, in one single session, before we are able to originate a loan for you.  To complete Entrance Counselling you will need:

  • Approximately 20-30 minutes to complete
  • Your FSA ID
  • Name of your Foreign School you wish to notify of counselling completion

Exit Counselling must be completed annually as UEA is a foreign school, this is to:

  • Help you understand your rights, responsibilities and obligations associated with Federal Student Aid
  • Prepare you for the repayment of your Federal Student Aid loan

We will contact you via email about completing this before your final disbursement is due within the loan year.

For continuing students, exit counselling will refresh your understanding of your rights, responsibilities and obligations before planning any loans for your study in the next academic year. 

Completing exit counselling annually will not start repayment of your loan.

If you wish to increase your loan, please contact the US Financial Aid team at UEA in line with the dates stated on your Offer of Funds letter where possible.

We email you in advance of every disbursement to offer the right to cancel or amend your loan so you will have the opportunity to make us aware, at this stage, that you would like to increase your loan and future disbursement.  

Once we have received your request over email, we will assess whether you are eligible for more funds and if the increase is approved, we will send you a revised Offer of Funds letter.

Please note that if you have an endorser on your PLUS loan, you will only be able to increase the loan up to the endorsed amount. Unless of course, your endorser is willing to increase the endorsed amount to allow you to borrow a higher PLUS loan.

If you are thinking about this, please email the Financial Aid team.

If you wish to decrease or cancel your loan, please contact the US Financial Aid team at UEA in line with the dates stated on your Offer of Funds letter where possible.

We email you in advance of every disbursement to offer the right to cancel or amend your loan so you will have this opportunity to make changes before any further money is disbursed to you.  

However, you are entitled to decide to decrease or cancel your loan at any time during your loan period. If you are thinking about this, please email us on usfinaid@uea.ac.uk and we can provide you with further details.

It may be worth noting that you can still make a repayment directly to your lender at any time, if you find what you have received is too much. Your lender's details can be found on the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). If you make a repayment within 120 days of loan disbursement, then your lender will treat this as a partial cancellation, with the appropriate adjustment of the loan fee and interest.

If you cancel your Federal Student Aid loan entirely with us, after receiving a disbursement, you will be required to complete exit counselling via StudentAid.gov.


If you are receiving US Federal Student Aid whilst studying at the University of East Anglia, we will report your enrolment status on NSLDS so that repayment of any previous US student loans can be deferred.

If you are studying with UEA but are not currently taking out any US Federal Student Aid, however still have prior loans outstanding, you will need to advise your lender that you are ‘in-school'.  Then send us your an In-School Deferment Form to complete and sign - please contact the UEA Financial Aid Administrators with this. We can arrange a suitable time for you to come to the office and complete the form. Please be aware we will need to check over the details and sign the form before we can process it on your behalf.

If you are receiving a US Federal Student Aid loan to support your studies at UEA you may only be permitted to undertake the following study-related activities in the United States:

  • A fully integrated and assessed placement or internship that represents no more than 25% of your total programme credits.
  • Independent research of not more than one academic year, if it is conducted during the dissertation phase of a doctoral programme, under the guidance of academic faculty, and is performed only in a facility in the US.

If you intend to undertake either of the above activities as part of your studies at UEA, please contact our US Federal Student Aid team for further advice and to ensure your plan can be achieved.

Once your federal loan has been processed ‘originated’ you will receive a Financial Aid Package through the post. This details your loan amounts and disbursement dates and it has been agreed with UK Visas and Immigration that this constitutes proof of funding.