Federal Student Loans are available to graduate and professional students. These federally supported loans offer flexible repayment options.
As a graduate student, you are eligible for the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, allowing you to borrow up to $20,500 per academic year. For additional funding, consider the credit-based Federal Graduate PLUS loan, which can cover up to the cost of attendance (tuition, room and board, books, supplies, travel, personal expenses, and loan fees).
How to Apply for a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
It is highly recommended that you complete the loan application steps below at least one month prior to the beginning of the semester:
1. Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
- Must be completed online and submitted each academic year
- Federal School Code for Boston University: 002130
- Parent income data is not required
- We encourage you to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to transfer your IRS federal income tax information from the IRS to your FAFSA
2. Entrance Counseling
- Must be completed online (select “I am a Graduate or Professional Student”)
- Must be completed by first-time borrowers of Boston University
3. Master Promissory Note
- Must be completed online (select Subsidized/Unsubsidized MPN)
- May be used for one or more academic years (up to ten years)
4. Loan Request Form
Complete the appropriate loan request form below for the Direct Unsubsidized Loan, following instructions at the link provided:
To be eligible, loan applicant must:
- Be a United States citizen or permanent resident
- Have been accepted into a degree program (certificate programs are not eligible)
- Plan to attend at least half-time (6 or more credits) each semester
- Be making satisfactory academic progress
- Be within the unsubsidized loan maximum borrowing limit of $138,500*
- Have no prior unresolved student loan default
*The maximum borrowing limit for the Graduate PLUS loan is tied to the annual Cost of Attendance.
Please read carefully—failure to meet any of these requirements could lead to the cancellation of a federal loan:
- Students are required to meet department guidelines for satisfactory academic performance (please contact your department to learn more about academic standing criteria) as well as satisfactory academic progress (SAP) for federal financial aid purposes.
- In some cases, students may be restricted from borrowing the same loan to repeat a course. Contact MET Graduate Financial Assistance to review your circumstances.
Graduate PLUS Application Steps
Students must submit the FAFSA and should apply for an Unsubsidized Loan prior to requesting a Graduate PLUS Loan. The Graduate PLUS Loan has a fixed interest rate, typically 1% higher than the Unsubsidized Loan, and requires a credit check.
- Apply by completing the appropriate loan request form below:
- The address on your application must match your address as listed in the Home Address section of the MyBU Student Portal.
- Print and sign, or sign with an electronic signature (not cursive font).
- Email your Graduate PLUS Loan application to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any extra funds resulting from a federal loan will automatically be refunded to you in the form of a check. The refund will appear on the MyBU Student Portal as a Title IV Refund.
Students can also submit an online refund request to set up direct deposit.
If you do not receive your check two weeks after the disbursement of your loan, please contact Student Accounting Services at 617-353-2264.