Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans

Interest Rates & Fees
Options for a Denied Grad PLUS Loan
How to Apply
Loan Entrance Counseling and Loan Agreement (MPN)


Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans are available to graduate students with a good credit history to help pay for educational expenses. This loan is a low-cost, low-interest-rate loan. Your eligibility for a Graduate PLUS Loan is not based on financial need.

You can use a Graduate PLUS Loan as a supplement to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan or as the sole loan to cover the cost of your education. You can borrow up to your financial aid cost of attendance minus any other form of financial aid or resource.


  • You must be admitted in full-standing as a degree-bound graduate student

  • You must enroll at least half-time in graduate-level coursework (5 credit hours during each fall and spring and 3 hours for the summer term).

  • You must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident of the U.S., or permanent resident of an eligible trust territory.
  • You must not be in default on any student loans and must not owe a refund on any Title IV Program, such as a Pell Grant, FSEOG, Federal Perkins Loan, Federal Work Study, Federal Subsidized Direct Loan, Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loan, Federal PLUS Loan or Consolidation Loan.
  • You must be maintaining Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress toward your degree.
  • You must not have an adverse credit history. You can have an eligible co-signer on your loan, if needed.
  • You must complete a Graduate PLUS Borrower's Entrance Counseling PRIOR to the disbursement of your loan.

Additional Information

  • A Graduate PLUS Loan may be deferred as long you are enrolled at least half-time.
  • Graduate PLUS Loan repayment begins within 60 days after the final disbursement of the loan.
  • The minimum monthly payment is $50, and the repayment term is up to 10 years.
  • You can pre-pay the loan in whole or part without penalty.

Interest Rates & Fees

Interest rates are set by federal regulation, effective as of July 1 of the academic year. There are no application fees to apply for a Graduate PLUS Loan.

Current fixed interest rates are:

Type of Loan Interest Rate* Origination Fee* Interest Type

Accrues Interest During

School/Grace Period

Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

Before 07/01/2024: 

On & After 07/01/2024: 

Before 10/01/2025:

 Fixed Yes

*Due to the Sequestration of Federal Student Aid Programs, interest rate and origination fees may be subject to change.

Limits for Graduate PLUS Loans

How Much Can I Borrow?

When you apply for financial aid, you are also provided with a financial aid budget (Cost of Attendance-COA) as part of your financial aid offer. Your COA represents a ceiling or cap in the total amount of financial aid our office can provide. Graduate students may borrow PLUS loan funds up to their full COA minus all other financial aid and resources. Federal guidelines require that all financial assistance, including loan funds, cannot exceed the cost of attendance.

Example of a Graduate PLUS Loan Eligibility Calculation
Remaining Grad PLUS Loan Eligibility $3,500
Description Amount
Cost of Attendance (This figure is for illustration purposes only) $25,000
(Minus) Total Financial Aid (This includes loans, fellowships, work study, etc.) - $20,500
(Minus) Other Resources (Such as tuition/fee waivers, outside scholarships, etc.) - $1,000

We encourage all Graduate PLUS Loan borrowers to review your anticipated costs and borrow only the amount that will help ensure your success. If you have any questions about the Graduate PLUS Loan or other financial aid matters, please contact one of our financial aid advisors.


Options for a Denied Graduate PLUS Loan

If your PLUS loan is denied due to the result of your credit review, you will receive notification from the Direct Loan Servicing Center (usually immediately). You may choose from the following options:

  • Have a credit status override completed by the Direct Loan Servicing Center. Contact them at 1-800-557-7394.
  • If you have extenuating circumstances, provide documentation to the Direct Loan Servicing Center. Your request for a PLUS loan will be reviewed again by the servicer.
  • Have a third-party endorser cosign the PLUS loan application with you. The Direct Loan Servicing Center will send you a packet of information for this option. If additional information is needed, contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center at 1-800-557-7394.

How to Apply

1. Complete a FAFSA form online at studentaid.gov. Once your file is complete, the Office of Financial Aid will send you a financial aid offer.

2. Accept any Federal Direct Loans that are offered to you (the interest rate and origination fees are lower on Direct Unsubsidized Loans than on Graduate PLUS Loans). To accept your student loans, log in to myWSU and select the myFinances Tab, then Financial Aid Awards link. You should borrow only what you need.

The amount awarded is based on initial computations and our knowledge of additional resources available to you. If any changes or corrections are made to the information used in determining your eligibility, the loan amount is subject to change and/or cancellation. You must report all scholarships, assistantships, and outside aid to our office. Adjustments will be made based upon notification of additional resources not listed on your award offer.

3.Complete a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan Application online at studentaid.gov. You will need your FSA ID in order to complete the application.

4. If the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS loan is approved, complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) for a PLUS Loan and the Graduate PLUS Loan Entrance Counseling at studentaid.gov.

Certifying approved PLUS loans for the upcoming academic year will begin in July and will take up to 3 weeks for processing. Students must be enrolled for the loan to be certified and processed. After the loan is processed, students will be able to see the loan amount on their Financial Aid Dashboard.

Loan Entrance Counseling and Master Promissory Note (MPN)

After you are approved for a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan, our office will continue the loan process by submitting the accepted Federal Direct Loan information to the Federal Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) system for origination.

An entrance counseling session is required and a valid Loan Agreement for a Graduate PLUS Loan (MPN) must also be on file with the COD before our office can make any Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan disbursements to you.

After you have successfully completed your entrance counseling session and Loan Agreement for a Graduate PLUS Loan (MPN), any future Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan offers that you accept will be linked to your original, completed MPN. This MPN is valid for up to 10 years from the date the first loan disbursement was made.