Federal Direct Stafford Loans
Direct Stafford Loans are low-interest loans for students to help pay for the cost of a student's education after high school. You must be enrolled as at least a half-time (6 credits) student to be eligible for a Stafford Loan. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education rather than a bank or other financial institution. The interest rate for the Federal Direct Stafford Loans is fixed at 5.50% for the 2023-2024 academic year for both subsidized and unsubsidized Stafford Loans.
Federal Direct Stafford subsidized and unsubsidized Loans also have a Default Insurance Fee of 1.057%. The Default Insurance Fee is deducted from the loan before the funds are disbursed to the institution.
There are two types of Stafford Loans: subsidized and unsubsidized. You must have financial need to receive a subsidized Stafford Loan. The U.S. Department of Education will pay (subsidize) the interest that accrues on subsidized Stafford Loans during certain periods. Financial need is not a requirement to obtain an unsubsidized Stafford Loan. You are responsible for paying the interest that accrues on unsubsidized Stafford Loans. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in order to be awarded Stafford Loans.
Annual Subsidized Limits
- 1st Year Undergraduates = $3,500
- 2nd Year Undergraduates = $4,500
- Remaining Undergraduate Years = $5,500
- Preparatory Coursework Needed to Enroll as Undergraduate = $2,625
- Preparatory Coursework Needed to Enroll in Graduate/Professional Program if Student has a Baccalaureate = $5,500
- Teacher Certification if Student has a Baccalaureate = $5,500
Annual Unsubsidized Limits
- Dependent undergraduates whose parents can borrow PLUS = $2,000
- 1st and 2nd year undergraduate dependent students whose parents cannot borrow PLUS and independent students = $6,000
- Remaining undergraduate years for dependent students whose parents cannot borrow PLUS and independent students = $7,000
- Preparatory Coursework Needed to Enroll as Undergraduate = $6,000
- Preparatory Coursework Needed to Enroll in Graduate/Professional Program if Student has a Baccalaureate = $7,000
- Teacher Certification if Student has a Baccalaureate = $7,000
- Graduate/professional students = $20,500
- Dependent students = $31,000 (up to $23,000 may be subsidized)
- Independent students and dependent students whose parents cannot borrow PLUS = $57,500 (up to $23,000 may be subsidized)
- Subsidized = $65,500 (includes Undergraduate borrowing)
- Unsubsidized = Defined by the U.S. Department of Education
- $138,500=Graduate or Professional Students
For additional information about Federal Direct Loans, visit the Federal Student Aid website.
Federal Loan Eligibility
To be eligible for Federal student loans, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Also, the FAFSA is needed for additional need-based Carroll College aid. Get more information or to file your FAFSA.
Students working on 2nd Bachelor's Degrees
Carroll College does not offer any institutional need-based grants or scholarships to students who choose to pursue a second undergraduate degree.
Federal Direct Stafford Loans
Students returning to work on a 2nd undergraduate degree will only be able to borrow under the Federal Direct Stafford Loan Program as undergraduates. Please note that there is an aggregate loan limit for undergraduate studies. This limit is not extended for students returning for a second undergraduate degree.
The Department of Education sets a "maximum time frame" for undergraduate students to complete an undergraduate degree. Students who have chosen to return to school to complete a SECOND undergraduate degree can only receive federal student loan funds for courses required to complete a second undergraduate degree.
Title IV HEA Federal student and/or parent loans are submitted to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS), and will be accessible by guaranty agencies, lenders, and schools determined to be authorized users of the data system.