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Loans for American Students

This is the 2019/20 application information, for students starting with QMUL in September 2019. If you want to discuss loans for 2018/19, please contact us. 

The Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office administers US federal loans and private study loans to eligible Queen Mary University of London students, our federal school code is G06697

IMPORTANT: Throughout your application process with the Department of Education you will be told that Queen Mary has been automatically notified of things, we will NOT.  Please ensure that you carefully follow the instructions given to ensure that your loans are originated correctly.  

Below is all the information you will need in order to apply for your funding, please ensure you read everything on our website before contacting us

Eligible courses

The majority of our undergraduate and graduate courses are eligible for Federal funding however there are exceptions, please see the list of ineligible courses below. 

  • Medicine
  • Dentistry
  • MSc Critical Care 
  • Foundation course
  • Any Postgraduate Certificate course
  • Any Postgraduate Diploma course
  • Any distance learning course
  • Courses taught at partner institutions - e.g. LLM in Paris
  • Study periods based in the US as part of your research degree - excluding 1 year writing-up period

If you are ineligible for the Direct Loan Programme then you may still be eligible for a private education loan

This list is not exhaustive and subject to regulation change.

Available loans

Federal Direct Loan

 

  • Subsidised -
For undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need, as determined by federal regulations. No interest is charged while the student is in school at least half-time, during the grace period, and during any deferment periods.
  • Unsubsidised -
For undergraduate and graduate students and not based on financial need. Interest is charged in all periods.
  • Parent PLUS -
For undergraduate students' parents; up to the value of the Cost of Attendance, less any Expected Financial Aid. Subject to credit checks. Interested is charged in all periods.
  • Graduate PLUS -
For graduate or professional course students; up to the value of the Cost of Attendance, less any Expected Financial Aid. Subject to credit checks. Interest is charged in all periods.

Private Loans

It may be possible for US students studying abroad to obtain private education loans, currently the only loan available is Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loans 

Please ensure that you are making the right choices for funding your studies by fully exploring both the Direct Lending and Private loans.

How much can I get?

Students may borrow up to the value of their Cost of Attendance.  This is a yearly budget approved by the College to ensure that you are not borrowing too little or too much.

The total value of your loan is specific to your requirements, but to help you determine what you will need we have put together a budget that students coming from the US have found useful in the past.

Rent/Travel/Bills £255 per week
Grocery shopping £50 per week
Course materials £35 per week
Personal Allowance £75 per week
2 Return flights (US-London) £1,750 single cost
PC & Printer £600 single cost
Visa Application Fee £348 single cost
Immigration Health Surcharge Calculated based on the duration of your course

The weekly costs have been carefully calculated to give a good quality of life whilst studying in London, but not to be excessive.  As such we will only consider increasing these costs in exceptional circumstances and you will need to justify or prove these to us.  

Not all of these items are relevant to returning students, and as such they will be omitted from your Cost of Attendance. 

In addition to your living costs your tuition fee is included in your Cost of Attendance.

You do not need to take out the maximum loan, if you wish to borrow less than the full amount just enter a lower amount on your loan request. 

The exchange rate is set at 1.35 for the 2019/20 academic year. This is calculated using currency data over a 90 days period from OANDA.

How to apply

The first thing you need to do is tell us that you will be attending. Throughout your application process with the Department of Education you will be told that Queen Mary has been automatically notified of things, we will NOT.

  1. Email bursaries@qmul.ac.uk and tell us the following
    • Full name
    • QMUL ID
    • Social Security Number
    • Date of birth
    • Preferred email address
    • Any other aid you are receiving. This could include:
      • QMUL Scholarship
      • Other scholarship (£ or $)
      • Sponsorship (£ or $) - this is usually when a corporation, charity or goverment (not loans) will be paying something towards your education.
    • For Sallie Mae - how much you want to borrow ($)
  2. Within 5 working days you will receive a Financial Aid Offer, which gives you a breakdown of the maximum loans you are eligible for.
  3. Complete all the necessary steps - sign Master Promissory Notes, complete your credit check and your Entrance Counseling - exactly what you need to complete will depend on your loan package and will be detailed in your offer.
  4. Return the following:
    • The loan request form that was provided with your Financial Aid Offer - remember you do not need to borrow the full amount of your loan entitlement, this is the maximum you are eligible for.
    • Requested documentation, this will definitely include your passport, but may include information about your parents, if you are taking out a Parent PLUS loan, or a co-signer or endorser, if one was necessary.
  5. Once this has been processed and approved by the US Department for Education systems we will issue you with loan notifications - this can be used to show your loan values to UKVI, QMUL Admissions and the QMUL Fees office. 

Fees and UK Visa requirements

Once you have received confirmation from us that you will be receiving enough loan to cover your tuition fees you can declare on the Admissions Portal that you are "sponsored" and as such you are exempt from paying the tuition fee deposit which is requested from International students. 

They will then issue your CAS - full details of the process by the Admissions team is here

The confirmation is your loan certificate which you may need to provide to the UK Visa and Immigration with your visa application.  For the purpose of proving to UKVI that you have these loans in place you can only use this loan certificate.  

Further information about applying for a UK Visa be found on the QMUL Website

If your loan is to cover the full cost of your fees then you do not need to make any payment directly to us. In order to complete your enrolment you will need to complete a tuition fee payment agreement - full details of this can be found here. You will not be charged the £50 fee for this if your loan covers the full value of the fees - this should be done at enrolment for new students and before re-enrolment for returning students. 

Loan disbursement

US Department of Education loans originated by QMUL will be disbursed in three equal instalments during each term.  

  • 16th September 2019
  • 6th January 2019
  • 14rd April 2019

These are the dates we will request the money from the US Department of Education, the first payment date is dependant upon you completing full enrolment for the 2019/20 academic year. Please ensure that you have sufficient funds to cover the period between your arrival at University and your first payment. While we try to get the payment of your maintenance element to you as quickly as possible please ensure you factor in the time it takes to transfer money internationally each term. 

We use Western Union to pay the money directly into your bank account - it is best to open a UK account as soon as you enrol, but if you do not provide your account details then you will be issued with a UK Sterling cheque. Details on how to open a UK bank account can be found here. Disbursements will be made in £GBP, the exact amount will vary as it is dependant on the exchange rate at the time of disbursement. 

Each disbursement is subject to the following conditions:

  • You must be making satisfactory academic progress*
  • You are continuing to study at least half-time
  • You are not in the USA
  • You have not violated any federal compliance regulations
  • You will be advised by email that a disbursement is due and its value and how much is due. When you receive this email you may contact us to reduce or cancel the disbursement. 

Please note - if you do not warn us of a required change by the deadline given in the email then you will be responsible for all interest charges and the repayments

*Statisfactory Academic Progress policy can be found here - SAP Policy [PDF 575KB]

Consumer information

As US students can use loans from their government to fund their studies at QMUL, the US government requires us to disclose the consumer information listed below.

Financial aid
Information regarding needs based and non-needs based funding available to QMUL students can be found on the following pages

Undergraduate - https://www.qmul.ac.uk/undergraduate/feesandfunding/bursaries/

Postgraduate - http://www.qmul.ac.uk/international/international-students/feesfinance/funding_masters/index.html

Research - http://www.qmul.ac.uk/international/international-students/feesfinance/funding_phd/index.html

QMUL Financial Assistance Fund information can be found here - http://www.arcs.qmul.ac.uk/students/finances/bursaries-grants-scholarships/financial-assistance-fund/

Our Advice & Counselling Service have produced guidance on budgeting and managing money (https://www.welfare.qmul.ac.uk/money/planning-budget-and-managing-money), this includes information about what you need to budget for.

Facilities and services available to students with disabilities
Students should be aware of disability support (http://www.dds.qmul.ac.uk/) and that any related costs can be included in the Cost of Attendance when applying for Federal or private loans.

Academic program information
Information about current academic programmes is available in our undergraduate and postgraduate prospectuses, as well as on our departmental web pages, where you will also find contact details of faculty and departmental staff. Please be aware that the structure of our programmes may be quite different from what you're used to in your own country and therefore it is advisable to consult the relevant academic department about their programmes.

UG - http://www.qmul.ac.uk/undergraduate/index.html
PG - http://www.qmul.ac.uk/postgraduate/index.html
Research - http://www.qmul.ac.uk/research/index.html

Transfer of credits - information regarding APEL can be found in our Academic Regulations http://www.arcs.qmul.ac.uk/media/arcs/policyzone/academic/Academic-Regulations-2017-18.pdf

Articulation agreements - http://www.qmul.ac.uk/international/partnerships/articulationpartners/index.html

Admissions policy
QMUL's admissions policy for all levels of study can be found here -
http://www.arcs.qmul.ac.uk/media/arcs/policyzone/academic/Admissions-Policy---March-2013.pdf

Textbook information
Information about any required and recommended textbooks for your course will be provided to you by your department. Should you require specific information about textbook, please contact the relevant academic department for advice. You are not required to buy books from a specific book shop.

Copyright infringement policies and sanctions
QMUL's Policy on Intellectual Property (http://www.arcs.qmul.ac.uk/media/arcs/policyzone/IP_Policy_Final_Senate_March2015.pdf) covers information on copyright infringement policies and sanctions.

School and program accreditation, approval or licensure
In the UK, the power to award degrees is regulated by law and the Privy Council is responsible for the granting of degree awarding powers and university titles. Please see our Royal Charter - http://www.arcs.qmul.ac.uk/governance/council/charter/

Drug and alcohol abuse
The College has a duty to ensure that we comply with the legislation contained in the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 of the UK. Policies and penalties associated with drug-related offences can be found in QMUL's Policy regarding the misuse of alcohol and other drugs: Misuse of alcohol and other drugs by staff and students policy [PDF 22KB]

The USDE provides information on the penalties associated with drug-related offences under the US Higher Education Act (http://www2.ed.gov/policy/highered/leg/hea98/sec483.html) Should you lose eligibility for US Federal Loan as a result of these penalties, we will provide you with a written notice which notifies you of your loss of eligibility and advises you of ways in which to regain eligibility.

Vaccinations policy
For all information relating to health and vaccinations see Health Services (https://www.studenthealth.qmul.ac.uk/)

Completion/graduation and transfer-out rates for students receiving athletically related student aid
QMUL does not offer any athletics related aid or scholarships.

Retention, completion/graduation and transfer-out rates
Please see these statistics here http://qm-web.planning.qmul.ac.uk/LeagueTables&PerformanceIndicators/UKPIs/Widening%20Participation/index.html

Placement in employment
Please see this information here http://qm-web.planning.qmul.ac.uk/LeagueTables&PerformanceIndicators/UKPIs/Employment-of-leavers/index.html

Intercollegiate athletic programme participation rates and financial support data
QMUL does not have an 'intercollegiate athletic programme' as defined by the US Department of Education.

Security report
Our Security (http://www.security.qmul.ac.uk/Campus%20Security/index.html) have a lot of information on how to stay safe on and off campus, please do read our Personal Safety Guide (http://www.security.qmul.ac.uk/documents/19882.pdf) as it gives detailed guidance on how to ensure that you and your property are kept safe.

QMUL's Missing person's policy can be found here
TBC

Privacy of student records
Your rights under the Data Protection Act 1998 are outlined on QMUL's Data Protection Policy (http://www.arcs.qmul.ac.uk/media/arcs/policyzone/Data-Protection-Policy-v03.0.pdf)

Should you have a complaint about the processing of your US loan, you have the right to file complaints with the US Department of Education, although it would be preferable that you contact us first so that we can try to resolve the problem for you.

FAQs

Here you will find a list of FAQ's - if the answer to your question is not here then please do contact us

Why am I not able to apply for grants?

As you have opted to study at an institution outside of the US you are not eligible for grants.

How did you calculate the cap on 'Rent/Travel/Bills'?

£255 represents many different kinds of properties available to Queen Mary students.

  1. Self-contained studios, including bills, in local private halls of residences, so needing no travel expenses.
  2. Self-contained studio in Mile End, plus bills, no travel needed.
  3. Self-contained studio in Stratford, plus bills and travel.

If you are struggling to find suitable accommodation then please do have a look at our Residential Services and Support website for help and advice. We will only be able to increase this cap due to individual circumstances, such as disability. 

How and when does QMUL apply 'Professional Judgement'?

When a school signs up to the US Federal Loan Programme we agree to administer funds in the best interest of the US Department for Education (USDE). While some elements of the administration of the loan programme are controlled by regulation we are also expected to apply 'Professional Judegement' to protect US tax payers money. Professional judgement may be used to determine the levels of funding that you are eligible for, or to reject your application entrely. Under USDE regulation the outcome of professional judgement may only be appealed if you believe it has been applied outside of the following rules:

(i) The determination is made on a case-by-case basis;

(ii) The documentation supporting the determination is retained in the student's file; and

(iii) The school does not engage in any pattern or practice that results in a denial of a borrower's access to Direct Loans because of the borrower's race, gender, color, religion, national origin, age, disability status, or income.

Can I get the money allocated towards paying for visa fees and flights before arriving in the UK?

Unfortunately Queen Mary is not able to release any money until you have fully enrolled for the academic year and that can only happen once you are in the UK. 

Do I have to pay a tuition fee deposit? How will admissions know I have a loan to cover my fees?

If you have a loan arranged to cover the full value of your fees, you do not need to pay the tuition fee deposit. Once your loan has been approved you will need to select that you are a sponsored student in the Admissions portal. If you require a CAS, please email a copy of the letter you have been provided with to cas-admissions@qmul.ac.uk. Your CAS will then be issued in the normal way.

Do I have to pay a deposit to QMUL Residences? 

Yes, this is a refundable deposit and, as such, cannot be covered by the US Loan agreement. 

Can the loan disbursement dates be bought forward at any time?

Queen Mary will not change the dates of disbursement as they have been set with the US Department of Education. 

Can I decrease my loan amount between disbursements?

Yes, you will receive an email about a month before each disbursement confirming your loan details. It will give you a deadline to cancel all or part of your loan. 

Can I increase my loan amount?

If you did not take out the full value of your Cost of Attendance (CoA) then you will be able to take out a further loan up to the value of your CoA. If you have taken out the full value of your CoA but have exceptional and unforeseen costs then we may be able to increase your loan if you can document these costs to us. 

What happens to my loan if I interrupt, transfer or withdraw?

As an international student there are many implications should you interrupt, transfer or withdraw from your studies, such as considerations surrounding your visa. The regulations set by the US Department of Education clearly define what you will have to repay in the event of you no longer studying on the same programme and we would suggest you contact us directly to discuss this if this is something you are thinking of doing. 

If the change to your programme means you are no longer eligible for funding we will complete a Return to Title IV assessment. This will tell us, and the USDE, what values, if any, will need to be returned to USDE and how this will be done. Our Return to Title IV (R2T4) policy can be found here - R2T4 Policy [PDF 421KB]

I have been turned down for a PLUS loan, what can I do?

You can ask an endorser to co-sign on a loan for you or your parent. More information can be found here

When will I get confirmation of my loans?

Once you have completed and submitted all the required documentation we will issue your loan confirmation within 5 working days.

 

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