Application Steps

Law students who wish to apply for federal student loans should read through the following application steps. Keep in mind that you may be required to complete certain forms in order to be considered for the various types of assistance. Missing forms will result in an incomplete application, which will delay your aid package.

Domestic, international, and non-degree students applying for a private alternative student loan do not complete a FAFSA. Visit the Private Student Loan Steps page for application instructions.

Step 1: Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

To complete the FAFSA you need to have an FSA ID and password. If you do not have an FSA ID you can choose "Start Here" under New to the FAFSA Process? heading and create an ID before you begin. 

When filing your FAFSA, add our Federal school code (001774)

After the FAFSA is processed (allow for two weeks), you will receive a SAR, or Student Aid Report, summarizing your information. If you do not receive your SAR within four weeks, or if you need to request a duplicate, call 800-433-3243. Resolve any incorrect information via a correction to your FAFSA, or by returning the corrected and signed SAR to the address listed on the SAR. 

All graduate students are considered independent when determining Federal student loan eligibility. We do not require that you list parental income on the FAFSA if you are only applying for federal student loan funding.

Step 2: Complete Promissory Notes and Entrance Counseling

There are additional steps to complete in order to finish the Federal Direct loan application process.

A) If you are a first-time Federal Direct Loan borrower, you must complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling in order to receive a Federal Direct Unsubsidized or Graduate PLUS Loan. Entrance Counseling only needs to be completed once and the MPN is valid for ten years.

B) If you are a previous Federal Direct Loan borrower, whether at the University of Chicago or at another institution, you do not need to complete a new MPN or Entrance Counseling. (Note: if you used an endorser on your last Graduate PLUS Loan, you will need to complete a new MPN.)

C) All borrowers, whether previous or new, who wish to apply for the Graduate PLUS Loan are required to complete the Graduate PLUS Loan Application. A credit-check (valid for 180 days) is required for the Graduate PLUS Loan and is immediately run by the Department of Education when you submit the PLUS Loan Application.

Step 3: Apply for Private Student Loans, if needed

If you would like to borrow a private/alternative student loan from an outside lender, you should thoroughly review all of the information on our website about these types of loans to see if it is the best option for your situation. Private student loans can be borrowed in concert with federal student loans, up to the student's remaining cost of attendance. Contact the Financial Aid Office if you have any questions about this process.

Step 4: Report Other Outside Financial Assistance

Report aid from other sources (Americorps, tuition assistance, outside scholarships, etc.) that are not listed on your award letter to our office via your my.UChicago portal. Select ‘Report Aid from Other Sources’ under the Finances heading.

Based on the amount and type of aid you are receiving, we may need to make adjustments to your loan amounts. You are not required to report Gift Aid from your department or division, as it is reported internally.