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Applications for 2024-2025 are now open.

Information for the 2025/26 academic year including updated spreadsheets will be available by the end of May 2025. Please wait for this to happen before applying for your loan(s). We will start to process applications for new students in June and current students from the end of July.

Navigate through the different sections on our US Loan webpages via the tabs on the left, where you will be able to see how to apply, locate your needed cost of attendance spreadsheet, read our frequently asked questions and much more. 

Steps of the US Federal Loan application process

  1. The student completes a FAFSA -
  2. The Student Funding Team confirms receipt of the FAFSA via the email noted on the FAFSA and sends further instructions on how to complete the remainder of the application
  3. The student completes the remainder of the application and sends the relevant documents to the Student Funding Team
  4. The Student Funding Team processes and certifies the loan and will contact the student if any documents are missing or queries arise
  5. The student will receive a notification letter via email confirming the loan has been certified which can then be used for Visa purposes
  6. The students College will receive the first disbursement on or near the date provided on the notification letter, and will pay living expenses out to the student
  7. The Student Funding Team will request an academic progress report to be completed by the students supervisor before the second disbursement
  8. The student will be requested to complete exit counselling before the second disbursement (only if completing in that year)
  9. The students College will receive the second and final disbursement on or near the date provided on the notification letter, and will pay living expenses out to the student
  10. If the student decides to either increase or decrease their loan during the year, the adjustment will be made by the Student Funding Team and the student will be informed as to how this has changed their disbursement amounts and dates.

Further information on applying for a US Federal Loan to Study at the University of Cambridge

Some courses such as Clinical Medicine, Veterinary Medicine/Science, Diploma, Certificate, EMBA and MAC (Master of Accounting) courses are not eligible for Direct Loans. If you are based in the US, part-time MSt courses will also not be eligible for Direct Loans. Any course that has an element of online learning, will not be eligible for Direct Loans. If you are studying any of these courses and require a loan a Private Loan may be an option.

From 1 July 2010 the University of Cambridge began participating in the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan programme. The change has been made in order to comply with the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, which was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama in March, ending the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFEL).

One of the provisions of the HCERA was the termination, as of 1st July 2010, of the bank-based Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) programme. From 1st July 2010 all new Stafford, PLUS, and Consolidation loans for eligible U.S. students can now only be made under the Direct Loan Program.

US Department of Education update: As a result of the Budget Control Act of 2011, SEC. 502, subsidized loans cannot be awarded to graduate and professional students (college grade level 6 and 7) if the loan period begins on or after July 1, 2012.

If undertaking any study in the US we require confirmation that the period in the US will not be more than 25% of your program of study (to confirm this to our office please ensure that you have entered your initials where requested on your 2024 2025 cost of attendance spreadsheet). This information is required in order that we can ensure that your eligibility for Title IV Direct Loans will not be affected.

The University requires research students to be resident in Cambridge and actively pursuing their research throughout the year (including during the summer months when undergraduate students are not in residence), with short breaks for holidays. Students must submit a request to spend time away from Cambridge (e.g. fieldwork) or to intermit their studies please refer to General Information | Student Registry ( for further information.

US regulations do not permit maintenance for a partner or children to be included in the cost of attendance. If you wish to claim for childcare costs for dependents who are accompanying you during your studies you will be required to provide supporting documenatation (e.g. screen shot, invoice etc.).

Once your Direct Loan(s) are processed and completed in our office we'll send you an e-mail confirmation. We will also attach the 'Notification of Student Loan For Academic Year 2024/25' letter which will tell you how much you will receive in loans and when you will receive them. The copy of the letter (if it's required) will be sufficient proof of your loan amounts for the academic year for the purpose of applying for your visa.