Office of Student Financial Assistance

The Federal Grad PLUS Loan is a credit based federal loan for graduate students. Interest that accrues on the loan is not subsidized by the federal government. For interest rates, please visit the Loan Program Comparison Chart. Repayment can be deferred while the student is enrolled in school for at least half-time. Please refer to www.studentloans.gov for the process of requesting an in school deferment or call 1-800-557-7394.

To be eligible for a Federal Grad PLUS Loan, you must:

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and meet federal eligibility requirements of U.S. citizenship or eligible non-citizenship status.
  • Be degree-seeking in a graduate program at UCF.
  • Be enrolled at least half-time in UCF graduate classes per semester that count toward your degree completion. At time of disbursement, you must be attending at least half-time.
    • Masters, Specialists, and Doctoral students – minimum of 4.5 hours fall or spring, 3 hours in summer
    • Master’s thesis students – minimum of 3 thesis hours in all semesters
    • Doctoral dissertation students – minimum of 3 dissertation hours in all semesters.
  • Complete verification (if selected) and any outstanding documents found on the myUCF To Do List.
  • If in receipt of a Federal Grad PLUS Loan during this academic year at another institution, make sure that the remainder of that loan is canceled before applying for a loan at UCF.
  • Understand that total aid cannot exceed the cost of attendance. Other aid (Scholarships, fellowships, waivers, etc.) affects financial aid eligibility.
  • Meet the standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
  • Complete the online Grad PLUS Entrance Counseling if this is your first Grad PLUS Loan at UCF.

How to Apply Federal Graduate PLUS Loan

You MUST borrow the maximum Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loans before applying for a Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loan!

  1. File the FAFSA
  2. Please complete the Federal Direct GRAD PLUS Loan application within 90 days of each semester.
    To apply, visit the Direct Loan Web site.
    NOTE: On Section 2 of the Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loan application, you must select the appropriate Award Year that corresponds with the loan period for which you are applying. If the Award Year does not correspond to the appropriate Loan Period dates, your loan will not be awarded.

    Loan Period Start Date End Date Award Year
    Fall 2017 8/21/17 12/09/17 2017-2018
    Fall 2017 & Spring 2018 8/21/17 5/01/18 2017-2018
    Spring Only 2017 1/08/18 5/1/18 2017-2018
  3. Complete the online Grad PLUS Master Promissory Note
    • if this is your first time borrowing a GRAD PLUS loan at UCF,
      OR
    • if you had an endorser on your previous loan.

    NOTE: The Stafford Master Promissory Note and Grad PLUS Master Promissory Note are NOT the same. You must complete a separate Grad PLUS Master Promissory note to fulfill the eligibility criteria for Grad PLUS Loan program.

  4. Complete the online Grad PLUS Entrance Counseling if this is your first time borrowing a loan at UCF.
  5. The U.S. Department of Education will conduct a credit check.
    NOTE: We begin processing Grad PLUS Loans after the Drop/Swap & Add period. Loan adjustment and reinstatement requests must be made by the following deadlines:

    Loan Period Adjustment / Reinstatement Deadline Award Year
    Fall 2017 11/17/17 2017-2018
    Spring 2018 4/06/18 2017-2018

Grad PLUS Loan Denials

If your credit has been denied for the Grad PLUS Loan, you will be given options on the www.StudentLoans.gov application to choose from:

  • I will obtain an endorser*
    • Choose this option if you would like to add a co-signer.
    • Students should notify the SFA Loan Department in order for the Grad PLUS loan to be awarded if your credit is approved with an endorser.
    • Borrowers who required an endorser for approval of the GRAD PLUS loan must sign a new MPN for any supplemental or future GRAD PLUS loan.
    • Borrowers whose Direct GRAD PLUS Loan credit checks are denied on or after March 29th, 2015 and then approved an endorser, must also complete a PLUS Counseling before the Direct GRAD PLUS Loan can be disbursed. The U.S. Department of Education will notify the borrower about the PLUS Counseling instructions**.
  • I want to appeal the credit decision*
    • Choose this option if you believe the credit check is inaccurate or you can provide updated information about extenuating circumstances.
    • Students should notify the SFA Loan Department in order for the Grad PLUS loan to be awarded if your appeal has been approved.
    • Borrowers whose Direct GRAD PLUS Loan credit checks are denied on or after March 29th, 2015 and then approved through a credit appeal, must complete a PLUS Counseling before the Direct PLUS Loan can be disbursed. The U.S. Department of Education will notify the borrower about the PLUS Counseling instructions**.

*For instructions on how to appeal or how to reapply using an endorser, please contact the Department of Education’s Applicant Services at 1-800-557-7394.

** PLUS Counseling is required if the U.S. Department of Education has informed you that you have an adverse credit history and you have obtained an endorser or documented to the satisfaction of the U.S. Department of Education that there are extenuating circumstances related to your adverse credit history.

PLUS Counseling can be completed voluntarily at any time. If PLUS Counseling is completed voluntarily and you are determined to have an adverse credit history by the U.S. Department of Education within 30 days of PLUS Counseling completion, your PLUS Counseling requirement will be considered to be fulfilled.

The Department of Education will email the borrower instructions on how to complete the PLUS Counseling. However, borrowers may also access the PLUS Counseling after they login to the www.StudentLoans.gov website:

 

  • Then, borrowers must select PLUS Counseling from the menu.

GradPLUS_ScreenShot_002

 

  • Borrowers may then specifiy the type of PLUS counseling (Parent or Grad PLUS) and continue to complete the counseling:

PLUS_ScreenShot_003

Disbursement of Loan

For information about loan disbursements, please visit our Disbursement of Financial Aid webpage.