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If grants, scholarships and family assistance do not cover the costs of attending college, you might consider loans. Though loan money must be repaid, interest is typically lower than consumer rates. See if loans are right for you by learning more about different types of loans and how to apply for them.

Applying for Loans
There are important differences in applying for a loan depending on whether you are pursuing a federal loan or a private education loan.

Federal Student Loans
As a student, you can apply for loans to pay for your education.

Federal Parent Loans
Your parents can help you pay for college by taking out a Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan. For Federal Direct PLUS Loan purposes, a parent is considered your biological or adoptive mother or father, but not a legal guardian.

Private Student Loans
Though not funded by the government, private loans can be the right choice for some students. But make sure you're aware of interest rates, loan fees and repayment plans.

When you borrow a loan, the loan will be submitted to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) and will be accessible by authorized agencies, lenders, and institutions.