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Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans are fixed-rate loans available to degree-seeking graduate or professional students enrolled at least half-time. The annual limit on a Graduate PLUS Loan is equal to the cost of attendance minus any other financial aid you receives. For example, if the cost of attendance is $40,000 and you receive $20,500 in other financial aid, you can request up to $19,500.

Note: Steps 1, 2, 3 and 5 must be completed every year, while step 4 is a one time requirement (unless the graduate student is required to obtain an 'Endorser' for their Grad PLUS loan).

1. Complete the FAFSA

Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine loan eligibility.

2. Record your eAward Decision

Log in to Self-Service Home Menu and select ‘Financial Aid.’

  • Select the aid year that you wish to review at the 'Select an Award Year' field. 
  • Click on ‘Review and accept your Financial Aid Award Package’ under the Checklist section.
    • NOTE: All the steps on the checklist prior to this must be completed first.
  • Review the direct loans that are part of your financial aid package and record your decision.
  • After you ‘Accept’ or ‘Decline’ the loan(s), you will be able to see the immediate changes in your eAward.
    • NOTE: If, at a later date, you change your mind regarding an ‘Accepted’ or ‘Declined’ loan, you CANNOT change it in your Self-Service account. To change the loan status OR amount, please review our FAQ on Loans (Types, Fees, Limits, Repayment) page for further instructions.

3. Apply for a PLUS Loan

Beginning late April for the upcoming academic year, you will log in to studentaid.gov using your borrower FSA ID to Apply for a Grad PLUS Loan each time you decide to borrow.

  • Applying for a PLUS Loan triggers a basic credit check
  • Once the PLUS application is submitted, you will immediately receive a credit decision of either 'Accepted' or 'Denied.'

Note: A credit decision is good for 180 days; therefore, steps 4 - 5 below should also be completed about the same time as the loan application. This will allow the loan to be originated before the 'Accepted' credit decision expires.

4. Complete the PLUS Master Promissory Note

If you receive an 'Accepted' credit decision when applying for a PLUS loan, you must also complete the Grad PLUS MPN at studentaid.gov.

Note: In most cases, a Graduate PLUS Master Promissory Note will be good for 10 years once successfully completed. This Graduate PLUS MPN is separate and distinct from the MPN completed for the Direct Graduate Unsubsidized Loan.

5. Complete Cedarville's Graduate Plus Authorization Form

Complete Cedarville's Graduate PLUS Authorization Form to specify the loan amount and loan term(s) for your requested Graduate PLUS loan.