Subsidized Loans are loans for undergraduate students with financial need, as determined by your cost of attendance minus expected family contribution and other financial aid (such as grants or scholarships). Subsidized Loans do not accrue interest while you are in school at least half-time or during deferment periods.
First-time borrowers taking out a Direct subsidized loan on or after July 1, 2013 are subject to the 150% Direct Subsidized Loan Limit, which limits the amount of time a student is eligible to borrow subsidized loans to 150% of their published program length (for example, 6 years for a 4 year program). Once you reach the time limit, you are no longer eligible to receive additional Direct subsidized loans and your outstanding loans will begin accruing interest. You may continue to receive Direct unsubsidized loans if otherwise eligible.
Unsubsidized Loans are loans for both undergraduate and graduate students that are not based on financial need. Eligibility is determined by your cost of attendance minus other financial aid (such as grants or scholarships). Interest is charged during in-school, deferment, and grace periods. Unlike a subsidized loan, you are responsible for the interest from the time the unsubsidized loan is disbursed until it’s paid in full. You can choose to pay the interest or allow it to accrue (accumulate) and be capitalized (that is, added to the principal amount of your loan). Capitalizing the interest will increase the amount you have to repay. See “Debt Management & Student Loans” for more important information on the capitalization of interest.
|Loan Type||Borrower||Interest Rate
(for loans disbursed from 7/1/17 to 7/1/18)
(for loans disbursed from 10/1/16 to 10/1/17)
|Unsubsidized||Student||4.45% Fixed for undergraduates
6.00% Fixed for graduates
|Deferment||You may receive a deferment if you are enrolled in school at least half-time or for unemployment or economic hardship|
|Repayment||There is a 6 month grace period that starts the day after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time enrollment. You do not have to begin making payments until your grace period ends.|
More information regarding student loans, program requirements, and managing repayment can be found at StudentLoans.gov.
How Much Can I Borrow?
The maximum amount you can borrow each academic year depends on your grade level and dependency status. See the chart below for annual and aggregate (lifetime) borrowing limits. You may not be eligible to borrow the full annual loan amount because of your expected family contribution or the amount of other financial aid you are receiving. To see examples of how your Subsidized or Unsubsidized award amount will be determined. Direct loan eligibility and loan request amount must be greater than $200 for a loan to be processed.
If you are a first-time borrower on or after July 1, 2013, there is a limit on the maximum period of time (measured in academic years) that you can receive Direct Subsidized Loans. This time limit does not apply to Direct Unsubsidized Loans or Direct PLUS Loans. If this limit applies to you, you may not receive Direct Subsidized Loans for more than 150 percent of the published length of your program. See your financial aid adviser or this link for more information.
Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan Examples
Alberta Gator is a first year dependent undergraduate student. Her cost of attendance for Fall and Spring terms is $17,600. Alberta’s expected family contribution (EFC) is $10,000 and her other financial aid (such as grants, scholarships and work study) totals $9,000.
Because Alberta’s EFC and other financial Aid exceed her Cost of Attendance, she is not eligible for need-based, Subsidized Loans. She is, however, eligible for an Unsubsidized Loan. The amount she would be awarded would be $5,500. Even though her cost of attendance minus other financial aid is $8,600, she can only receive up to her annual loan maximum (which is $5,500 for a first year dependent undergraduate).
Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan Limits
The amount you can borrow through the Federal Direct Loan Program is determined by your dependency status and classification in college. The annual and aggregate loan limits are listed in the charts below.
|Undergraduate Annual Loan Limits||Dependent Student||Independent Student|
|First Year||$5,500 (Up to $3,500 Sub)||$9,500 (Up to $3,500 Sub)|
|Second Year||$6,500 (Up to $4,500 Sub)||$10,500 (Up to $4,500 Sub)|
|Third, Fourth, and Fifth Year||$7,500 (Up to $5,500 Sub)||$12,500 (Up to $5,500 Sub)|
|Undergraduate Aggregate Loan Limits||$31,000 (Up to $23,000 Sub)||$57,500 (Up to $23,000 Sub)|
|Graduate Annual Loan Limits||Unsubsidized*|
|Graduate Aggregate Loan Limits||$138,500 (Up to $65,500 Sub)|
|Pharmacy* (Graduate) Annual Loan Limits||$33,000|
|Health Professions* Annual Loan Limits||$40,500|
|Health Professions* Aggregate Loan Limits||$224,000 (Up to $65,500 Sub)|
To Apply for a Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan:
- Complete a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).
- Indicate your preference for Direct Loans using ONE.UF. Choose “Financial Aid” for the appropriate academic year, then view “Aid Status,” or go directly to your status page here.
To be Eligible You Must:
- be a U.S. citizen, national or permanent resident;
- be enrolled at least half-time;
- not have defaulted or owe a refund to any previous aid program;
- maintain satisfactory academic progress; and
- post-baccalaureate students must petition for eligibility.
To Receive Your Subsidized or Unsubsidized Loan:
- Complete Entrance Counseling using StudentLoans.gov.
- Accept your loan award on ONE.UF. Under “Financial Aid” on the left-hand menu, choose “Awards and Disbursements” for the appropriate academic year. You may also cancel or reduce the amount of your loan.
- Complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) using StudentLoans.gov.