Graduate Students

Unsubsidized Stafford Loans for Graduate Students

Graduate students borrowing from the Federal Direct Stafford Loan Program are only be eligible for unsubsidized  loans.

Interest will accrue on the loan once it disburses to the student’s account. Students will have the option of paying the interest while enrolled in school at least half-time or allowing the interest to be added to the principal. If the interest is added to the principal, the overall loan amount will be higher upon repayment and interest will continue to accrue monthly. The current interest rate for an unsubsidized loan is 5.31%.

Graduate students may borrow up to $20,500 in Federal Stafford loans each academic year, depending on their cost of attendance.

To be eligible for a Federal Direct Stafford Loan, graduate students must meet all conditions:

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Be enrolled at least half-time, which is 4.5 credit hours at the graduate (5000 or above) level
  • Be enrolled in a degree seeking program or an approved graduate certificate program (See the Graduate School's website)

General Information

  • Graduate Students cannot receive financial aid if they are taking undergraduate classes only.
  • Graduate students must be enrolled in at least 4.5 credit hours at the 5000 level or above each semester in order to be eligible for Federal Student Loans and for UNC Charlotte to certify enrollment for a loan repayment deferment.


Please be aware that the Office of  Financial Aid will not disclose financial information or award amounts over email, including to the student. Students may access their specific financial aid information by logging into their My UNC Charlotte account.

Faculty, staff and administrative officers at UNC Charlotte are unable to disclose account information to anyone other than the student in adherence to FERPA.

Direct Loan Basics for Students

Please review the PDF for general information on Direct Loans
Direct Loan Basics for Students

Graduate Students are eligible for the Graduate PLUS loan after they have exhausted their stafford loans.  Click for more information on Graduate PLUS Loans.


Work-Study is not available for Graduate Students, however Graduate Assistantships are offered through the Graduate School.