Various lenders offer private/alternative loans to students specifically for college costs. Repayment typically begins after the student graduates or is no longer enrolled. These loans require a student to have a satisfactory credit history and/or a credit-worthy co-signer. The interest rates and loan fees can vary by lender, and often these financing terms are tied to the credit worthiness of the student borrower and co-signer. The maximum amount students can borrow is the annual cost of attendance minus all other financial aid the student has been awarded.
Each year students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) if the student wants to be considered for Federal Direct Loans.
To maintain eligibility for federal financial aid, students are required to meet the minimum standards of financial aid academic progress which are described in further detail in the following section. In addition, students may only receive federal financial aid twice for a specific course the student has already completed and passed.