Transition to the Direct Loan Program

From 1 July 2010 the University of Edinburgh will begin participating in the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan program.

We are making this change 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 is the termination, as of 1st July 2010, of the bank-based Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program. From 1st July 2010 all new Stafford, PLUS, and Consolidation loans for eligible U.S. students can only be made under the Direct Loan Program.

What is the difference between FFELP and the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program?

In the Direct Loan Program, the U.S. Department of Education acts as the lender, providing funds for Stafford loans and PLUS Loans. With FFELP, students chose a bank or lender, and the the University then certified that students and parents were eligible for the loans.

If I had previously received a Stafford or PLUS Loan through a lender, do I have to change to the Direct Loan Program?

Yes, all University of Edinburgh students who wish to take out a Stafford or PLUS Loan for the 2010 - 2011 academic sesion will now need to borrow through the Direct Loan Program. As before, you may apply for private (non-federal) loans through the lender of your choosing. We recommend that you apply for federal loans first because generally the rates and terms are more favourable from the federal government than through private education loans.

Further information on the Direct Loan Program and how to apply for US loans can be found on the Financial Aid section of our website.

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