Loans are borrowed funds that you have to repay, usually after you graduate.

Either you or your parents can take out an education loan, but there are different programs for students and parents. If your family wants to take out a loan, start applying for financial aid, since often the most affordable loans are student loans based on need. Federal loans are restricted to U.S. citizens or permanent residents, but other loan programs are not.

Some loans, referred to as subsidized loans, do not accrue interest while you are in school. Unsubsidized loans do accrue interest that may be paid while you are in school or is added to your principal balance when you graduate.

In our award notification to you we may recommend a specific student loan amount as a part of your self-help award. However, you may borrow less or more than that amount to fit your needs. 

For all loans listed please check our Undergraduate Loans Chart or the Direct Loans from the Department of Education for the most current interest rates.

Student loans based on need

Your family has to apply for financial aid and meet the financial need guidelines for you to receive one of these loans.

Student loans not based on need

You have to apply for these loans, but there are no financial need guidelines to qualify.

Apply for an education loan as an U.S. student

  1. Apply for financial aid.
  2. Review your self-help award (suggested work and loan amount) on your financial aid award notification.
  3. Decide if you would like to borrow and how much. If you have questions about your eligibility or how to maximize the amount of money that can be applied to your student account, send an email to and we will assist you.
  4. Once you decide the amount and how much you would like to borrow, fill out the Loan Request Form.
  5. Go to the MIT Online Financial Aid System when you get the email notification to complete the online loan entrance counseling and sign the promissory note(s).
  6. We will receive notification that you have completed all of the requirements and disburse the funds directly to your student account after you are registered for each semester.
  7. If you are not eligible for a federal loan, or have exhausted your federal eligibility, you may want to consider a private education loan.

Apply for an MIT Technology Loan as an international undergraduate student

  1. Apply for financial aid.
  2. If you are an MIT Scholarship recipient, you may request an MIT Tech Loan via the Loan Request Form.
  3. When you receive your revised award notification including the loan we may request the name and address of your co-signer so that we can mail them an application (you may also give us this information when you make the loan request).
  4. An email will be sent with an Application and Solicitation document with instructions to complete a Self-Certification Form for the MIT Technology Loan and Private Education Loans. Upon receipt of the completed self-certification form, you will receive two additional disclosures and you will need to sign the MIT Technology Loan Promissory Note. The funds will not be released to your student account until you are registered for each semester and a three day cancellation waiting period.

Parent loans

A parent loan is a great way for a family to spread education expenses over time so the amount paid each month is more manageable. Parents are eligible to borrow up to the price of education minus any student financial aid, including student loans. In addition to loans from private lenders, parents may consider:

Apply for an education loan as a parent

  1. Complete the FAFSA. If you would like to be considered for federal aid only and not complete the entire MIT financial aid application process, please email to let us know.
  2. Complete an application online by signing in under the Manage My Direct Loan at MIT will receive the information electronically within 48 hours and update the student's financial aid package to reflect the PLUS loan.
  3. The parent borrower must sign a master promissory note online at

Private Loans

These are student and parent loans made from third party lenders. Ordinarily, you should not consider a private education loan unless all of your federal eligibility is exhausted because the terms and conditions of private loans, including the interest rates, are often less favorable.

Read our guide on private loans and please contact us if you have questions. Before certifying any private loan we will connect with you directly.