US Federal Student Aid

If you are a US citizen or eligible none US citizen and have firmly accepted an unconditional offer to commence study on an eligible program at Staffordshire University, you may be able to receive US Federal Student Aid from the US Department of Education.

Eligibility

To be eligible to receive Federal Student Aid, an individual must:

  • Be a US Citizen or an eligible non-US Citizen.
  • Be enrolled or accepted for enrolment (on at least a half time basis) on an eligible course at Staffordshire University.
  • Evidence achievement of a high school diploma or equivalent qualification.
  • Complete required entrance counselling (where applicable) and Master Promissory Notes.
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  • Not be in default on a previous loan educational loan.

Some programmes are not eligible for Federal Student Aid at Staffordshire University, these include:

  • Programmes classified as non-Degree.
  • Any program delivered wholly or in part by telecommunications i.e.  distance learning/blended learning programmes.
  • Nursing/Medical Programmes.
  • Programmes for which any portion is provided by an institution/entity that is not eligible to participate in Title IV Programmes.
  • Collaborative Academic Partnerships with other institutions in US.
  • Collaborative Academic Partnerships with other institutions abroad.
  • Apprenticeship programmes.

Contact the University’s Federal Student Aid Team for further information: federalstudentaid@staffs.ac.uk

Federal Student Aid application process

1. Complete Free Application for Federal Student Aid Form (FAFSA)

  • Create an account on studentaid.gov to produce a FSA ID.
  • Gather the documents required.
  • If you're determined a dependent- your parents will need to provide information on your application.
  • Staffordshire University Federal School Code- 042757.
  • Inform us that you have submitted your FAFSA by emailing federalstudentaid@staffs.ac.uk and providing your Full Name, SSN, Date of birth and University Applicant ID number.

2. You will receive Student Aid Report (SAR)

  • Your SAR will provide your EFC (Expected Family Contribution) and also may detail any actions needed to further your application.

3. Resolve Application Queries (if required)

  • If there are outstanding actions against your application we may contact you. You will need to work with us to resolve these.
  • You may need to provide additional evidence to support your application.
  • Our Federal Student Aid Team will support this.

4. You will receive a Funding Notification (Award Letter)

  • The letter will include an overview of how we have calculated your Cost of Attendance (COA) in order to determine your loan amounts.
  • Review the information and loan amounts offered and return a signed copy to us.

5. Complete and sign a Master Promissory Note
We cannot disburse any loan until this is completed.

  • (we expect you to complete this within 14 days of returning your award letter) https://studentaid.gov/mpn/
  • This is a legal document where you promise to repay any loans to the US Department of Education.
  • If you are accepting a PLUS LOAN as well as a subsidized or unsubsidized  loan you need to complete a MPN for each.

6. You may be required to complete Entrance Counselling
We cannot disburse any loan until this is completed.

  • 1st time borrowers are required to complete entrance counselling.
  • Where applicable this is a Federal Government requirement.
  • It ensures you understand the terms and conditions of your loan.

7. You will receive a loan disbursement plan.  

  • The plan details when to expect loan disbursements.
  • It is important to ensure that you have funds in place to support your travel and living costs before you receive your first loan payment.
  • 1st year Undergraduates are subject to a 30 day disbursement delay.

How much can I borrow: cost of attendence?

The amount you can borrow depends upon your calculated Cost of Attendance, minus any other Estimated Financial Assistance (EFA) this can include things like bursaries, scholarships, grants, and other awards. 

For each new academic year, we develop a list of estimated student expenses that we anticipate students will need to cover for their chosen programs of study; this is known as a Cost of Attendance. We include direct educational costs such as: 

  • tuition, fees, course materials and resource costs. 

and indirect maintenance costs including: 

  • living expenses (including accommodation & food), international and local transportation, miscellaneous expenses. 

We use the COA to support the calculation of your loan entitlement.

Whilst there may be slight variations according to individual needs, we expect your COA to be in line with our estimates. We have a duty to ensure that students only borrow what is required for educational purposes.

Loan disbursements

US regulations require us to disburse your loan in multiple instalments. Your disbursement schedule is dependent upon your level and program of study.  

At each disbursement, funds will be deposited into your university fee account, and we will deduct any monies owed to us (for example- tuition fees, accommodation fees). You will then receive any remaining monies in your personal bank account within 14 days.

We will notify you of each individual disbursement and provide you with the option of cancelling your loan should you wish.

US Direct Federal Loan Types and Limits

Loan Types

Staffordshire University is certified to distribute the following Direct Federal Loans offered by the US Department of Education:

  • Direct Subsidised Loans
  • Direct Unsubsidised Loans
  • Direct Plus Loans

Please see the table below to see how the loans compare.

Direct SubsidisedDirect UnsubsidisedDirect PLUS

Who can get the loan?

Undergraduate students with a financial need.

Undergraduate and graduate students. You don’t have to demonstrate financial need.

Parents of undergraduates

or graduates.

How much can I borrow?

We calculate this using your COA, EFC and other financial assistance you may be receiving.

We calculate this using your COA and other financial assistance you may be receiving.

We calculate this using your COA and other financial assistance you may be receiving.

Who pays the interest?

US Department of Education if you meet relevant conditions (visit https://studentaid.gov) for more information

You (the student) are responsible for paying interest during all periods.

The borrower is responsible for paying the interest during all periods.

Is there a Loan Fee?

Yes

Yes

Yes

Is there a credit check completed?

No

No

Yes

US Federal Loan Limits

There are limits on the amount in loans that you may be eligible to receive. The limits are based upon factors including- your status (dependent or independent), the level of your study and your financial need.  

Dependent Undergraduate
 Total Maximum $Total aggregate (amount you may borrow per program of study) $

1st year of study

5,500 (of which a max. $3500 may be subsidised)

 

31,000

2nd year of study

6,500 (of which a max. $4500 may be subsidised)

3rd year of study onwards

7,500 (of which a max. $5500 may be subsidised)

Independent Undergraduate (Inc. Dependent Undergraduates whose parents are denied a PLUS Loan)
 Total Maximum $Total aggregate (amount you may borrow per program of study) $

1st year of study

9,500 (of which a max. $3500 may be subsidised)

 

57,500

 

2nd year of study

10,500 (of which a max. $4500 may be subsidised)

3rd year of study onwards

12,500 (of which a max. $5500 may be subsidised)

Postgraduates
 Total Maximum $Total aggregate (amount you may borrow per program of study) $

Per year of study

20,500

138,500

Please visit https://studentaid.gov/ for more information on loan types and limits.

US Federal Student Loan FAQs

What is a FAFSA?

FAFSA is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid which you need to complete. This application is the only way that your eligibility for Federal Student Aid Programs can be assessed. Before completing your FAFSA, you should ensure that you have all the relevant information and documentation to hand. Support and Advice for this can be found at: https://studentaid.gov/h/apply-for-aid/fafsa.

What is the Federal School Code?

Each institution involved in disbursement of Federal Loans has a unique code. You will need to use this code to search for and add an institution into your application. This ensures that the institution receives your processed application data to allow an assessment of your eligibility for loan types and amounts. Our Staffordshire University school code is:  042757.

What happens once I complete the FAFSA?

We recommend that you email the University’s Federal Loan Team at federalstudentaid@staffs.ac.uk to inform us that you have submitted your FAFSA. 

Upon completion of your application, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR), which lists the data that you inputted at application and provides an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) used to determine eligibility for needs based financial aid. Please ensure that you check the details on your SAR. It is important that you view the comments section which will identify any errors needing to be resolved to further your application. For further information on the process refer to our application process section at the top of this webpage.

When will you assess my application?

We will start the processing applications for the new academic year mid-late spring and will aim to notify applicants of eligibility and calculated loan entitlements via email by the beginning of July at the latest.
For in year applications, we aim to process your application within three weeks of receiving an ISIR (although this may take longer during busy departmental periods).

Who do I contact at Staffordshire University to discuss Federal Student Aid?

FSA sits within the University’s Registry Operations Team. You can contact the Federal Loan Officer via the methods below:
Email: federalstudentaid@staffs.ac.uk

Do I have to reapply for Federal Aid each year?

Yes, you will need to complete a new FAFSA for each new year of your study.

What is a Cost of Attendance (COA)?

For each new academic year, we develop a list of estimated student expenses that we anticipate students will need to cover for their chosen programs of study; this is known as a Cost of Attendance. We include direct educational costs such as:

  • tuition, fees, course materials and resource costs.

and indirect maintenance costs including:

  • accommodation, living expenses, travel, miscellaneous expenses.

We use the COA to support the calculation of your loan entitlement.

Why do I need to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN)?

Your MPN is a legally binding document which the US Department of Education requires you to sign to confirm that you agree to the terms and conditions of your loan.  Please note that as Staffordshire University is classed as a Foreign School, you are required to sign a new MPN for each loan you have borrowed, for each academic year of study.

What is Entrance Counselling?

If you are a first-time borrower of Direct Loans, you are legally required to complete entrance counselling. This process is not as daunting as it sounds, it is in place to ensure that you understand the terms and conditions linked to your loan. Complete the entrance counselling.

Please email a copy of your entrance counselling confirmation to the Federalstudentaid@staffs.ac.uk mailbox to prevent any delays with the processing of your loan.

What is Exit Counselling?

The US Department of Education require Federal Loan borrowers to complete exit counselling by the time you graduate (or alternatively drop below ‘half time’ or withdraw) from Staffordshire University. Complete your exit counselling.

Please email a copy of your exit counselling confirmation to the Federalstudentaid@staffs.ac.uk mailbox to confirm that you have met the regulatory requirements.

What if I am assessed as not eligible for Federal Student Aid?

If you are not eligible for Federal Student Aid, you may be eligible for a private loan to support your studies. We are aware of only two lenders which offer loans to students studying outside of the US. Taking out a private loan is entirely your decision, and we recommend you consider your options and research terms, interest rates and other details carefully before making your decision. Before you apply for a private loan, please inform us via email at Federalstudentaid@staffs.ac.uk so that we can calculate a cost of attendance in relation to your program of study.

Private loan information

We encourage any student eligible for a Federal Direct Loan to utilise this type of loan in the first instance. Please see our Consumer Disclosures Information document for more information on Private Loans.

 

Consumer disclosures and other information

Consumer Disclosures Information (PDF, 154KB)

Health and Wellbeing

Data Management and Protection

View our privacy policy and information on how we use and store data.

Maintaining eligiblity

Satisfactory Academic Progress must be maintained in accordance with the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

As required by Federal regulations, we confirm the attendance of all students in receipt of US Financial Aid, online through the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). 

Return of Title IV Funds Policy

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