Student Financial Services

Aggregate Stafford Loan Limits

Last Updated: Oct 23, 2014 11:00AM CDT
Your school determines the loan type(s), if any, and the actual loan amount you are eligible to receive each academic year. However, there are limits on the amount in subsidized and unsubsidized loans that you may be eligible to receive each academic year (annual loan limits) and the total amounts that you may borrow for undergraduate and graduate study (aggregate loan limits). The actual loan amount you are eligible to receive each academic year may be less than the annual loan limit. These limits vary depending on:
  • What year you are in school
  • Whether you are a dependent or independent student  
If you are a dependent student whose parents are ineligible for a Direct PLUS Loan, you may be able to receive additional Direct Unsubsidized Loan funds.
 
The following chart shows the annual and aggregate limits for subsidized and unsubsidized loans.
 
Year Dependent Students
(except students whose parents are unable to obtain PLUS Loans)
Independent Students
(and dependent undergraduate students whose parents are
unable to obtain PLUS Loans)
First-Year Undergraduate Annual Loan Limit $5,500—No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $9,500—No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.
Second-Year Undergraduate Annual Loan Limit $6,500—No more than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $10,500—No more than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.
Third-Year and Beyond  Undergraduate Annual Loan Limit $7,500—No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $12,500—No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.
Graduate or Professional Students Annual Loan Limit Not Applicable (all graduate and professional students are considered independent) $20,500 (unsubsidized only)
Subsidized and Unsubsidized Aggregate Loan Limit $31,000—No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $57,500 for undergraduates—No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.
 
$138,500 for graduate or professional students—No more than $65,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. The graduate aggregate limit includes all federal loans received for undergraduate study.
 
Notes:
  • The aggregate loan limits include any Subsidized Federal Stafford Loans or Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans you may have previously received under the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program. As a result of legislation that took effect July 1, 2010, no further loans are being made under the FFEL Program.  
  • Effective for periods of enrollment beginning on or after July 1, 2012, graduate and professional students are no longer eligible to receive Direct Subsidized Loans. The $65,500 subsidized aggregate loan limit for graduate or professional students includes subsidized loans that a graduate or professional student may have received for periods of enrollment that began before July 1, 2012, or for prior undergraduate study.  
If the total loan amount you receive over the course of your education reaches the aggregate loan limit, you are not eligible to receive additional loans. However, if you repay some of your loans to bring your outstanding loan debt below the aggregate loan limit, you could then borrow again, up to the amount of your remaining eligibility under the aggregate loan limit.

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    Sullivan Center
    36 S. Wabash Ave., suite 1200
    Chicago IL 60603
    Phone: 312.629.6600
    Fax: 312.629.6601

    Office Hours:
    Monday–Friday (except for holidays)
    8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

sfshelp@artic.edu
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