How much can you borrow in graduate student loans?

Graduate Stafford loans

Graduate Stafford loans have the following annual and aggregate limits. Aggregate limits mean the sum total of all Stafford loans ever taken out, including multiple year and even undergraduate Stafford loans.

  • Annual: $20,500, of which no more than $8,500 can be subsidized
  • Aggregate: $138,500 of which no more than $65,500 can be subsidized

Graduate PLUS loans

Graduate PLUS loans have no limits except cost of attendance less aid, which means that you can borrow up to the cost of a graduate school education minus other financial aid you've received.

Example: East Nowhereville University has tuition and fees of $50,000 for an MBA program. You qualify for the full graduate Stafford loan amount of $20,500. This leaves $29,500 in unmet need. You can borrow up to the $29,500 in a graduate PLUS loan. If you earned a $1,000 graduate scholarship, you would have an unmet need of $28,500 and could borrow up to that in a graduate PLUS loan.

Graduate Private loans

Graduate private loans also have no limits except cost of attendance less aid, which means that you can borrow up to the cost of a graduate school education minus other financial aid you've received.


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