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Financial information for US students 2016/17

Updated: February 2016

Loans for the 2016/17 academic year


Our eligibility certificate with the US Department for Education permits us to provide Federal Student Aid for the following:

  • associate degree programs (in the UK these are known as foundation degrees);
  • bachelors degree programs;
  • masters degree and doctoral programs; and
  • first professional degree programs.

Certificate and diploma programs are not eligible for Federal Student Aid.

Please note that there are some Kingston University courses that are not eligible for Federal Aid. View the list of ineligible courses (PDF).

You should also be aware of the following:

  • Courses with a compulsory study abroad year are not eligible for Federal Student Aid.
  • Undergraduate students who apply for or receive Federal Student Aid at Kingston University cannot take an optional study abroad year. To receive Federal Student Aid you will need to sign an agreement that you will not take a study abroad year during your time at Kingston.
  • Courses delivered at partner institutions, including Kingston College, are not eligible for Federal Student Aid.
  • Distance learning courses are not eligible for Federal Student Aid.

Programs that do not qualify for Federal Student Aid may still qualify for Private Student Loans.

Study Abroad students

Students here on a Study Abroad programme who are registered at a US university are not eligible to apply for financial aid through Kingston University. You should instead apply to your 'home' university.

How you apply

FAFSA applications for academic year 2016/17 can be submitted from January 2016 however the US Financial Aid Office will not start processing FAFSA applications until 1 June 2016 – we will deal with applications in the order we receive them.

You must have been offered a place on a course by Kingston University AND accepted that place before we will process your application for Federal Student Aid. We recommend that you submit your application to us no later than 31st July 2016 in order to enable us to process your application in time for you to apply for a visa.

Applying for aid

1. Fill in a FAFSA application via

You will need the Kingston University school code when filling in the FAFSA application, which is G10816.

Watch a video for information on how to fill out your FAFSA.

2. Check your Student Aid Report

Once FAFSA has processed your information you will be emailed a copy of your Student Aid Report (SAR). Please review the information carefully and ensure that it includes an EFC (estimated family contribution) and the details of any previous loans.

If any information is missing or there are comments stating further information is required, you will need to make corrections and re-submit your application. If there is a C shown next to the EFC, further information will be required. Check the comments codes and make any necessary corrections. In some cases we may need to ask you to provide documentary evidence (such as proof of US citizenship).

We will receive the electronic version of your SAR 72 hours (three days) after you have submitted it.

Calculated cost of attendance: starting 1 June 2016, we will check for new Student Aid Reports each week. If you have been offered a place on a course at Kingston University and have firmly accepted the offer, we will send you a calculated cost of attendance and details of the loans for which you are eligible, along with instructions on what you need to do next. Please be aware that we will not be issuing cost of attendances to students who have not accepted our offer of a place.

Loan types

The loans available are:


(undergraduate students only)
Fixed, maximum value; no interest charged while in school Origination fee of 1.068% deducted at disbursement
Unsubsidised Fixed, maximum value; interest charged while in school Origination fee of 1.068% deducted at disbursement
PLUS Loan Max value set by Kingston University in the calculated cost of attendance; interest charged while in school Origination fee of 4.272% deducted at disbursement

The maximum amount of subsidised and unsubsidised loans is as follows:

Dependent undergraduates (students aged 24 and under):

Year of course Subsidised loan Unsubsidised loan Maximum loan
1 $3,500 $2,000 $5,500
2 $4,500 $2,000 $6,500
3 and later $5,500 $2,000 $7,500

Independent undergraduates (students aged over 24 or those whose parents are refused a Parent PLUS Loan):

Year of course Subsidised loan Unsubsidised loan Maximum loan
1 $3,500 $6,000 $ 9,500
2 $4,500 $6,000 $10,500
3 and later $5,500 $7,000 $12,500

Graduate and professional students:

Year of course Unsubsidised maximum loan
All years $20,500

The lifetime aggregates are $65,500 (subsidised) and $138,500 (combined subsidised and unsubsidised). You may not borrow more than this total amount.

Federal Direct Parent and Grad PLUS Loans may be used as supplemental funding when subsidised and unsubsidised loan maximums are reached. As always, the total amount you may borrow in student loans for any academic year is limited to your annual calculated cost of attendance minus all other sources of funding.

Estimated cost of attendance at Kingston University

Please note that you are not able to borrow more than your total estimated costs of attendance (CoA).

  • Undergraduate courses typically have a 40-week academic year.
  • Postgraduate (graduate and professional) courses typically have a 52-week academic year.
Academic year 2016/17 Weekly 40 weeks 52 weeks

(based on an en-suite room in Clayhill or Seething Wells for undergradutes and an en-suite room in iQ Kingston for postgraduates)
£131 for undergraduate/£194 for postgraduate £5,240 £10,088
Board £75 £3,000 £3,900
Books and course costs £16 £640 £832

(based on the cost of a London Bus Pass at student discount rate, with the £10 student Oyster card cost)
Annual cost of £548 plus £10 for the student Oyster card £558 £558
Personal £50 £2,000 £2,600
Sub-total living costs £285.95 for undergraduate/£345.73  for postgraduate £11,438 £17,978
Tuition fees (variable)   £12,700 £12,700
Flights (two return flights)   £1,500 £1,500
Computer   £500 £500
Application costs for a visa to study in the UK   £875 £875
Total cost of attendance (£)   £27,163 £33,703
Converted to US $ (£=$1.80)*   $48,893 $60,665

This is an estimated cost of attendance. The tuition fees shown above are for illustration only and will vary depending on your course. The accommodation and travel costs are based on students living in the University's accommodation or in the Kingston upon Thames area.

For graduate and professional students, the maximum allowable cost for accommodation is equivalent to a single en-suite room in the IQ Kingston hall of residence. More expensive accommodation is available in this hall of residence but we will only allow the cost shown here.

We will advise you of the estimated cost of attendance for your course at the start of your application based on the information on your Student Aid report.

Loan origination fees can also be included in the cost of attendance (we include them automatically in the information we will send you).

* Please note that the exchange rate shown is for illustration only and is set once a year (normally in May).

Please note you are not able to borrow more than your total calculated cost of attendance (CoA).

3. Confirm the amount you wish to borrow and complete the loan application/s and entrance counselling and credit check (for PLUS loans)

Return the calculated cost of attendance to us, confirming the amount of each type of loan you wish us to originate, along with:

  • a Master Promissory Note for Direct Subsidised/Unsubsidised Loans;
  • a screenshot confirming you have completed Entrance Counselling (please be aware that 'Financial Awareness Counselling' is NOT acceptable) even if you have done it in a previous year – it is good practice to do this every year as it reminds you of your responsibilities in the Direct Loan Scheme; and
  • a PLUS Master Promissory Note and screen shot of the credit check acceptance if you will be using a PLUS Loan,

You do all of this online at You sign into this site using the same PIN that you used to sign your FAFSA.

Please remember that if you have been awarded a scholarship from the university to cover all or part of your tuition fees, you will need to let us know about the award at this stage so we can reduce your tuition fee amount on your cost of attendance to reflect your scholarship award.

We don't always know in advance whether you have been awarded a scholarship so your cost of attendance could be calculated on the basis that you are liable to pay the full tuition fee amount. If this happens, you will be wrongly approved for a higher cost of attendance however when your scholarship appears on your account later on in the academic year, we will then have to reduce your loans. We do not have any discretion on this.

Please be aware that as an international student, you may be subject to Maintenance Requirements, please visit this page.

If you do not send everything we need, we will not be able to originate your loans.

4. Loan certification

When you have completed steps 1 to 3, we will originate your loans on the system and once they are confirmed we will mail you a US Federal Direct loan certificate.

We use Royal Mail Standard International Delivery to issue loan certificates, which can take 10 working days to reach you in the USA. Please bear this in mind when making your applications. In order to ensure that your first disbursement is made on time and that you have enough time to apply for your visa we strongly recommend that you complete your loan application no later than 29 July 2016 for courses starting in September.

5. Disbursing (paying) the loan

  • Undergraduate students will receive three disbursements (one per term).
  • Postgraduate students will receive four disbursements (one per term and one at the start of the summer).

For students on a standard, September start, academic year, the earliest payment dates will be as follows:

  Disbursement 1 Disbursement 2 Disbursement 3 Disbursement 4
Undergraduate students 3 October 2016 9 January 2017 10 April 2016 N/A
Students on graduate and professional courses 3 October 2016 9 January 2017 10 April 2016 10 July 2016

From each disbursement we will deduct an amount towards tuition, accommodation (if you are in university accommodation) and any other charges incurred, and the remainder will be forwarded to you. You will need to open a UK bank account to avoid having to pay two foreign exchange charges. Find out more about opening a UK bank account.

You will receive an email notification approximately 14 days prior to the disbursement, in line with Federal regulations concerning your right to cancel. This will also tell you the amount of any University charges to be deducted from the disbursement.Once the disbursement has been made, you will receive a further confirmation of the amount deposited into your bank account.

We work with a Foreign Exchange Provider and secure an exchange rate for the whole academic year in September. This protects you from any major fluctuations in the pound / dollar exchange rate.

Satisfactory academic progress

While in receipt of Federal Student Loans for the loan period outlined on your loan application, you are required to be enrolled on your programme of study and to maintain satisfactory academic progress. Satisfactory academic progress means maintaining an average of at least C grades over the current academic year. Please note that this is a higher standard than the University's pass mark for undergraduate students. We will check your progress before releasing loan funds.

For more information please refer to our Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy (PDF).

Withdrawal from your course or suspending study

If you withdraw from your course, suspend your study or drop below at least 50% enrolment, you must inform Student Funds in the Student Life Centre no later than five working days after withdrawal in addition to notifying your course office.

If a student who receives financial aid withdraws from their course or drops below 50% attendance, we will recalculate your financial aid eligibility based on your period of attendance. This could mean that you have to pay back money received from Federal Stafford or Plus loans you may have received. The University may also have to repay funds received for tuition and/or accommodation to the US Federal Government. In this case you may become liable for additional fee payments to the University in order to replace these funds.

Any calculation will be undertaken in line with the rules set by the US Department of Education and cannot be amended in any way. See the full details in our Return of Title IV (R2T4) Policy (PDF).

Exit counselling

It is a legal requirement that all students who have received Federal loan(s) and have graduated or withdrawn from their programme of study or dropped below 50% attendance complete exit counselling. This is done through Please go to the site and follow the instructions for Stafford Loan and /or PLUS Loan exit counselling.

Repaying your loans

It is your responsibility to repay your loans, in the same way that you have to repay a bank loan or a mortgage. When you leave your course you will enter a six-month grace period (this does not apply to PLUS loans which go into repayment immediately, but you can request a deferment).  

There are a number of repayment options available and you should discuss these with your loan servicer to determine which is the most appropriate for you. If you do not select a repayment plan you will be placed on the standard plan with fixed repayments for up to ten years. You can find details of your loan servicer on the NSLDS website.

Further details about repayment plans, including interactive calculators can be found on the Federal Student Aid website.

Watch a video for information on how to manage your student loans.

Consumer information

Federal regulations require schools to disclose specific consumer information to prospective and enrolled students.

The following is a summary of the key information and policies. If you need any assistance or require paper copies of any of them please contact Student Funds.

Academic programmes

Copyright infringement policies and sanctions:

School and programme approval and accreditation:

Notice of Federal Student Aid penalties for drug law violations:

Vaccinations policy health and welfare:

Textbook information:

Drug and alcohol prevention programme certificate:

  • Retention rate, completion / graduation and transfer out rates – see Key Information Sets (KIS) (select subject area, then click on the 'See Unistats data for this course' link


  • Job placement rates and types of graduate and professional education in which the School's graduates enrol – see Key Information Sets (KIS) (select subject area, then click on the 'See Unistats data for this course' link


Privacy of student records – Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA):

Student Loan information published by the US Department of Education:

National Student Loans Data System (NSLDS):

Entrance counselling for Direct Loan borrowers:

Exit counselling for Direct Loan borrowers:

Private education loans

You may want to apply for a private education loan to cover the cost of education not met by Direct Subsidised/Unsubsidised and PLUS loans. If you are over 24 and studying an undergraduate course, PLUS loans are not available so private education loans may be your only other option. Private education loans are not part of the Direct Loan scheme and not covered by Federal Student Aid Regulations. However, if you have already borrowed the maximum cost of attendance you will not be able to apply for any other loans, including private loans.

We are happy to work with any lender who you choose to use who will lend to US students who study internationally. However, since the ending of the FFELP loan scheme, many of the lenders have withdrawn from the student loan market, especially for those US students who wish to study overseas. The following lender(s) are not endorsed or recommended by Kingston University – if you are able to find other lenders willing to lend to students studying internationally you can choose to use them.

Smart Option Student Loan – the Smart Option Student Loan is a private, credit-based loan for undergraduate and graduate students. Designed to reduce the overall loan costs and help shorten the amount of time it takes to pay off the loan, the Smart Option Student Loan features interest-only payments while in school and repayment terms based upon the cumulative outstanding Sallie Mae-serviced private student loan balances and the borrower's academic grade level.

The Smart Option Student Loan is available through Sallie Mae.

Please note we are unable to issue a loan certificate for private loans so you will have to ensure your lender can provide such a letter if you are required to prove evidence that you have sufficient funds to cover your tuition fees and living costs when you apply for a student visa.

Veterans Affairs – educational benefits

Applications for educational benefits are made online through the United States Department of Veterans Affairs website.

As with Federal Student Aid, Veterans educational benefits are only available for courses where you attend one of the University's main campuses. They are not available for courses delivered by partner institutions or for distance learning courses.

The Department of Veterans Affairs has approved the following courses at Kingston University for educational benefits:

  • Civil Engineering BSc/BEng(Hons) (including foundation year)
  • Graphic Design BA(Hons)
  • BA(Hons) Human Rights with Media and Cultural Studies
  • Creative Writing MA
  • Psychology MSc

You will need to submit by email a scanned copy of your Certificate of Eligibility from the Department of Veterans Affairs to Student Funds once you have accepted an offer of a place at Kingston University. 

We will need to confirm your enrolment before your educational benefits are released. Confirmation will be sent to the Department of Veterans Affairs via VA Form 22-1999 (Enrolment Certificate) once you are registered and in attendance at the University. Your tuition and fees payment will be sent to the University on your behalf. All other payments will be sent directly to you. 

If the course you have accepted an offer of a place on does not appear in the above list you will need to email the following to Student Funds:

  • a scanned copy of your Certificate of Eligibility from the Department of Veterans Affairs;
  • your full name;
  • your date of birth;
  • your social security number;
  • your address; and
  • the title of the course which you have accepted an offer of a place on.

This information should be emailed to

The University will then send a request to the Department of Veterans Affairs for the course to be approved for educational benefits. Please note that it may take approximately three months for the Department of Veterans Affairs to approve or decline a course for educational benefits. We therefore recommend that you send this information to us as early as possible.

Contact us

Student Life Centre: Student Funds
Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 7315

International students
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