Funding for US students

US student loans at UBC

UBC is an approved Title IV institution, allowing UBC students from the US to access Direct Loans. 

Direct loans

At UBC, the Direct Loan Program includes

  • Direct Subsidized Loans
  • Direct Unsubsidized Loans,
  • Parent and Grad PLUS Loans. 

UBC can provide Direct Loan funding to students who meet the basic eligibility requirements

Maximum funding amounts depend on whether you’re classified as a dependent or independent student by the answers you provided on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Direct Subsidized loans

  • Available to undergraduate students in school with at least 6.0 credits per terms and have financial need.

  • Financial need is determined by the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) from your FAFSA.

  • The US Department of Education pays the interest on a Direct Subsidized Loan

Find more information on Direct Subsidized Loans.

Direct Unsubsidized loans

  • Available to both undergraduate and graduate students in school with at least 6.0 credits per term in approved programs
  • Are not based on financial need
  • Interest is charged starting from the disbursement date
  • You can choose to either pay interest while you are in school or have it added to the principal balance of your loan.

Find more information on Direct Unsubsidized Loans.

Parent and Grad PLUS Loans

Parent PLUS and Grad PLUS Loans both require a credit check. Interest is charged starting from the disbursement date.

PLUS loans have a higher interest rate than Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans and interest builds up during your course of study. 

Parents of undergraduate students (Parents PLUS Loans)

Parent PLUS Loans can help parents pay for the educational expenses of dependent children studying at the undergraduate level.

Find more information on Parent PLUS loans.

Graduate students (Grad PLUS Loans)

Graduate PLUS Loans are a good option for graduate students if you meet one of the following:

  • You have applied for maximum Direct Unsubsidized Loans.
  • You have reached your annual limit of $20,500.
  • You have reached your lifetime limit and require additional financial aid.

Find more information on Grad PLUS loans.

Pell Grants and Perkins Loans

UBC students from the US are not eligible for Pell Grants and Perkins Loans because UBC is considered a foreign school.

Funding amounts

Direct Loan program eligibility

In addition to your basic eligibility requirements, there are additional program requirements that you must meet in order to receive (and maintain) your loan funding while at UBC.

Undergraduate students eligibility

All undergraduate student applicants must meet all the following requirements:

  1. Be registered in and maintain at least 6.0 credits in the entire term for which you’re applying for funding
    • Be registered only for in-person and on-campus courses
    • Registered courses must be for credit; audited and waitlisted courses do not meet this requirement
    • For summer session eligibility, you must be registered in courses across both terms from May to August
  2. Maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (pdf) throughout your studies with a cumulative average of 60% and by completing two thirds (67%) of cumulative credits attempted at the end of each funded term

Graduate students eligibility

All graduate student applicants must meet all of the requirements:

  1. Be considered full time and be enrolled in at least one course for the entire term in which you’re applying for funding 
    • Be registered only for in-person and on-campus courses
    • Registered courses must be for credit; audited and waitlisted courses do not meet this requirement
    • For summer session eligibility, you must be registered in courses across both terms from May to August
  2. Maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (pdf) throughout your studies by maintaining continuous registration in each term and to complete your program of study in a timely manner (within 5 years for master’s students, and within 7 years for doctoral students).

If you're a dual Canadian/American citizen

You may be eligible for Canada Student Loans through your home province. If you have any residency affiliation, through you or your parents, to the province of Ontario, you may be an exception. Please contact your Enrolment Services Advisor for more information

Distance education courses

The CARES Act has been extended to June 2022. Under the temporary CARES Act, US students are allowed to take online courses during the 2021 Winter Session (Sep 2021 – Apr 2022) without it having a negative impact on their eligibility for Direct Loans. 

During regular sessions that are not covered by the CARES Act, students participating in any ineligible courses (such as distance education, online, and flexible learning classes) will lose Direct Loan eligibility for the duration of their degree.


You can apply for a Direct Loan and submit a US Loan Request Form up to 2 weeks before the end of your study period.

We recommend applying for your Direct Loan at least 4 weeks before the start of the term. This will qualify for a one-month tuition deferral and ensures that you receive your funding for the start of the term.

Any late payment may result in a financial hold being applied to your tuition account. Visit Paying tuition for details.

If you have a Canadian bank account, we recommend you set up direct deposit. Direct deposit allows the Direct Loan amount that exceeds your fees to be deposited directly into your bank account.

Winter Session funding timeline

October FAFSA opens for the next academic year
June - July Winter Session Registration opens
UBC starts to process Winter Session US loan applications — you must be registered to receive an assessment letter 
August Tuition deferrals are applied for students who submitted a complete US loan application at least 4 weeks before the start of school

First week of Term 1 classes

First loan disbursement for the Winter Session appears on Student Service Centre (SSC)

First week of Term 2 classes

Second loan disbursement for Winter Session appears on SSC

Summer Session funding timeline


Summer Session Registration opens

April Tuition deferrals are applied for students who submitted a complete US loan application at least 4 weeks before the start of school
May First week of summer session term 1 
Summer Session loan disbursement appears on Student Service Centre (SSC)
July First week of summer session term 2

Financial aid estimate

Your assessment letter will not be available until 2 to 3 months before the school year starts. During March to April. See what you may be eligible for in Direct Loans and plan your finances in advance.

Request a financial aid estimate

How to apply

Applying for a US Direct Loan at UBC is different than it is for students attending a school in the US.

When you complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the Department of Education will indicate that they'll notify your university of your application.

As a foreign school, UBC does not receive these email notifications. You must submit the US Loan Request Form below for UBC to consider you for Direct Loans. 

Application process

  1. Submit your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Make sure to select UBC from the school list. UBC's school code is G08369.

  2. Submit a UBC US Loan Request Form.

    1. This form is required because UBC is not notified when you submit your FAFSA. Submit the form so we can access your FAFSA online.

    2. If you make changes to your FAFSA after submitting your request form, please email so we can see if the updates will affect your assessment.

  3. If you are going to apply for PLUS Loans, complete your application at There are separate tabs for Graduate students and Parents.

  4. If you are applying for Parent PLUS funding, have your parent(s) complete the Agreement to Release Funds form (pdf).

  5. Fill out a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at for each type of loan you wish to receive. There are separate MPNs for Direct Subsidized/Direct Unsubsidized Loans and Parent/Grad PLUS Loans.

  6. If this is your first Direct Loans application at UBC, complete Entrance Counselling at

  7. Verify your email. Log into your Student Service Centre (SSC) and make sure UBC has your current email address. You can view and update it in "Contact Summary" under Personal Info. All US loan updates and information will be emailed to you at this email address.

Co-op or exchange

Co-op terms

Co-op is a great way to gain work experience as you study. Most co-op placements arranged through your undergraduate program are eligible for Direct Loan funding. 

If you're considering doing your Co-op in the US, please connect with an Enrolment Services Advisor first to fully understand the financial implications for your future Direct Loan eligibility. Co-op placements in the US will make you ineligible for future Direct Loan funding.

If you're a graduate student, please check with an Enrolment Services Advisor to confirm if your co-op is loan-eligible.

Exchange programs

There are many opportunities offered by Go Global for students to spend a term or entire year studying abroad.

If you're considering going on exchange and are eligible for US loans, contact an Enrolment Services Advisor to understand your financial options before you apply for exchange.

Check the US Federal School Code Search (under Foreign Country) to confirm that your partner university is also eligible to provide Title IV funds. 

If you choose to do an exchange at a school in the US, you will lose your eligibility for Direct Loans for the rest of your program. We do not recommend going on exchange to a US school if you require federal loans.

Information about your partner university

  • If your partner university is Title IV and not located in the US, UBC can assess you for Direct Loans while you’re on exchange.

  • If your partner university is not Title IV, you will not be eligible to receive Direct Loans for the period of your exchange. You may want to consider private loans like Sallie Mae instead. 

Related resources

If you have questions

If you're an undergraduate student, please contact your Enrolment Services Advisor directly. To find your advisor’s contact information, log into your Student Services Centre (SSC) and select “UBC Contacts” under Personal Info.  

Graduate, postgraduate, and all other students can contact an Enrolment Services Advisor by calling 604 822 9836 or submitting your question through the online form.