US Direct Loans for American Students - NSCD

US Direct Loans for American Students

Northern School of Contemporary Dance (NSCD) participates in the William D. Ford Direct Loan Program. To apply for a US Federal Direct Loan through the Direct Loan Program, you must be an American student enrolled on a degree-granting program at NSCD.

NSCD is an approved Title IV institution for administering these loans.

In case you have not yet applied for admission to NSCD, please consult our admissions requirements for international students on course pages listed at the links below:



Please note NSCD is not eligible to certify Direct Loans for students on Certificate of Higher Education (CertHE) or Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) courses. If you are an American student intending to study any of these courses at NSCD, please note that you will not be able to fund your studies with Federal Direct Loans.

If you are ineligible or unable to apply for Federal funding, an alternative can be found via Global Education Management Services

General Financial aid available for NSCD students can be found on the following pages:

Undergraduate – Fees & Finance

Postgraduate – Fees & Finance

Eligibility for US Federal Loans

To be eligible for a US Federal Loan you must:

  • be an eligible citizen or legal alien (green card holder)
  • have a valid Social Security Number (SSN)
  • if male and aged 18-25, have registered for Selective Service or have an exemption certificate
  • have a high school diploma or equivalent
  • be enrolled or accepted for enrolment on an eligible course – with no time in the US
  • be studying full-time
  • complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year and be declared ‘eligible for aid’
  • continue to make Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
Types of Federal Direct Loans

As a foreign school NSCD is eligible to originate loan applications for Federal Direct Loans and PLUS loans.

Full information on these loans can be found at the Federal Student Aid webpage

Federal Direct Subsidized Loan

A Federal Direct Subsidized Loan is awarded on the basis of financial need. The U.S. government pays interest on a subsidized loan while you are enrolled at university at least half-time and during deferment periods. Direct Subsidized loans for undergraduate students will have an interest rate of 2.75%

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans

A Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan is awarded regardless of need. The interest rate for Federal Direct Unsubsidized loans is fixed at 2.75% for undergraduate borrowers and 4.30% for postgraduate borrowers.

You are not required to pay the interest on this loan while at university but it is recommended that you do. You will be charged interest starting at disbursement until it is paid in full. If the interest accumulates, it will be added to the principal amount of the loan and increase the amount to be repaid.

Fees: A fee of 1.057% will be deducted from the gross amount of the loan you borrow, so you may wish to take this into consideration when determining the amount you need to borrow.

Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan

Parents of dependent undergraduate students can borrow a Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan to help pay for educational expenses at the university.

Parents can borrow up to the total Estimated Cost of Attendance minus all other sources of financial aid their student receives.

PLUS loans are the financial responsibility of the parents and not the student.

A Parent PLUS loan borrower must meet the same citizenship and residency requirements as the student. The parent must not owe a refund on a Federal student financial aid grant or be in default on a Federal student loan.

A credit check is conducted when your parent begins the loan application process. Undergraduates whose parents do not qualify for a PLUS loan can borrow additional Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan funds.

The interest rate is fixed at 5.30% and repayment begins within 60 days after your loan is fully disbursed and lasts ten years.

Fees: Origination fees for Direct Parent PLUS loans are set at 4.228%

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

The Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is a Federal loan that postgraduate students with good credit histories may borrow to help pay their educational expenses.

A postgraduate student may borrow up to the total Cost of Attendance less all other financial aid they receive.

They also must have applied for their annual loan maximum eligibility under the Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loan Program before applying for a Graduate/Professional PLUS loan.

The interest rate is fixed at 5.30% and repayment begins within 60 days after your loan is fully disbursed and lasts ten years.

Fees: Origination fees for Direct Parent PLUS loans are set at 4.228%

Repayment begins on the date of the last disbursement of the loan and the first payment is due within 60 days after the date the loan is fully disbursed. A Graduate PLUS borrower may receive a deferment while they are enrolled on at least a half-time basis at an eligible school. Upon dropping to less than half-time enrolment status, the borrower is not entitled to a grace period on their PLUS loans.

How much can I borrow? Cost of attendance

NSCD is responsible for determining an estimate of costs related to your education for the academic year. The Cost of Attendance (COA) specifies the maximum amount you are eligible to apply for and is based on a typical student’s expenses. It includes the following, minus any other aid you may be receiving, including scholarships and bursaries:

  • Direct educational costs – tuition fees, books and supplies
  • Indirect (maintenance) costs – accommodation, living costs, travel, miscellaneous personal expenses

Costs will vary per student depending on the Tuition fee of the course being studied, any financial aid you are eligible for and the Expected Family Contribution (for those receiving a subsidised loan).

For details on how much subsidised/unsubsidised you can borrow, visit:

Further information is available by contacting the NSCD Finance department: +441132193037 or

Facilities and services available to students with disabilities

Northern School of Contemporary Dance welcomes all applicants and students regardless of disability, ethnicity, gender, gender expression, sexuality or religion. We encourage students to tell us about any disabilities, impairments or conditions (for example dyslexia, a physical, sensory or mental health condition) at the earliest opportunity so that support can be put in place for you. Our building is fully wheelchair accessible.

Students should be aware that any disability-related costs can be included in the Cost of Attendance when applying for Direct or private loans.

How to Apply

Please note applicants starting in the Fall should not start this process until June of the same year, otherwise your documents will have expired when you go for your visa interview.

1. Complete your FAFSA

The first step in applying for a US Federal Direct Loan is to complete a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). The Federal School Code for NSCD is 042829. To apply electronically, you must have an FSA ID. Start the application process.

As soon as you have submitted your FAFSA, please inform us about you application by emailing your full name to the Admissions Office at NSCD. Unfortunately we are not automatically notified when an application is made.

It is important to note that NSCD does not have an EIN number and is therefore unable to provide students with a 1098T if required.

2. Student Aid Report is generated

Once your FAFSA is completed and processed, it will generate a Student Aid Report (SAR). This is used by NSCD to determine your eligibility for a loan as stipulated by the U.S. Department of Education.

3. Award Letter is sent to you

After NSCD receives your SAR, you will receive an Award Letter approximately two months before the beginning of the semester. The letter details  the amount of loans you may be eligible for based on such elements as your Cost of Attendance, your year of study, need and other financial assistance.

You will be required to sign and return an Award Acceptance Form before any loan disbursements can be made.

4. Complete your Master Promissory Note (MPN)

Once you have accepted and returned your Award Letter, you can go on to complete the applicable Master Promissory Notes (MPN). The MPN is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loans and any accrued interest and fees to the US Department of Education. It also explains the terms and conditions of your loans.

The MPN is a binding legal document that you must sign when you get a federal student loan. It lists the terms and conditions under which you agree to repay the loan and explains your rights and responsibilities as a borrower. It is important to read and save your MPN because you’ll need to refer to it later when you begin repaying your loan or at other times when you need information about provisions of the loan, such as deferments or forbearances.

Complete MPN

Entrance and Exit counseling

Entrance Counseling

Except for parent Direct PLUS Loan borrowers, if you have not previously received a loan, you must complete entrance counseling before NSCD can make the first disbursement of your loan. This ensures that  you understand the terms and conditions of your loan and your rights and responsibilities.

Entrance Counseling

Exit Counseling

Before you withdraw, graduate, or drop below half-time attendance (regardless if you plan to transfer to another school), regulations require that you complete an exit counseling session for your Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans. The counseling session provides information about how to manage your student loans.

Begin exit counseling.

Loan Disbursement

The first disbursement is at the end of September, close to enrolment, and the second disbursement will be approximately mid-January. The precise dates will be in your award letter which you may need for your visa application. Please be aware that each disbursement will be the same value in accordance with Federal regulations.

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Students receiving US Direct Loans are required to progress at a pace that will result in completion of their program of study within a period of time specified in their offer letter. The NSCD satisfactory academic progress policy (attendance policy) is available here.

Withdrawals and Refunds

NSCD’s refund and compensation policy does not extend to students who have taken out Federal Financial Aid through the Direct Loans program.

If you wish to withdraw from your course, please contact Hannah Perry Head of Academic Registry . You will need to notify us this way before any withdrawal procedure can be started.

If a student who receives Title IV funding withdraws, interrupts for more than 180 days or drops below half time attendance then the University will follow the requirements of returning funds laid down by the US Department of Education. This will be applied alongside the School’s withdrawal and refund policy and will be processed by Academic Registry at the School. The Vice Principal and Academic Registrar will use RT24 (Return of funds calculator provided by the US Department of Education) to determine how much of the loan may be retained and how much must be returned.

Click here to view the NSCD Title IV return of funds policy.

Return of Funds by NSCD

A student ‘earns’ aid on a daily basis and therefore if a student withdraws, any ‘unearned’ aid for that payment period it will need to be returned to your US Department of Education. Once the amount NSCD and the student needs to return has been calculated, the required amount due from the School will be sent to the US Department of Education and the student notified if they need to return any funds.

Loans are returned in the following order:

  • Unsubsidized Stafford
  • Subsidized Stafford
  • PLUS (Graduate or Parent)

There are some Title IV funds that students may have been scheduled to receive that cannot be earned once a student withdraws because of other eligibility requirements. For example, in certain circumstances, if a first-time, first-year undergraduate student has not completed the first 30 days of the program before withdrawal, the student will not earn any FFEL loan funds that he or she would have received had the student remained enrolled past the 30th day.

A first year undergraduate, receiving aid for the first time who withdraws within the first 30 days of a programme will be deemed not to have earned any aid.

If, under this policy, a student owes funds to NSCD once the money has been returned to the lender, the student will be notified directly in this instance.

Return of Funds by the Student

If the student is notified that there are loan funds that must be returned (by the student) the student should repay in accordance with the terms of the promissory note. That is, scheduled payments are made to the holder of the loan over a period of time. Students who have received a refund of their loan proceeds before withdrawing may be required to return part or all of those funds to the lender.


US loans are administered by Darren Carr, NSCD Vice Principal, and the Admissions team. For any questions regarding US Federal Student Aid at NSCD please contact