Applying for US Financial Aid


From 29th April 2021, La Trobe University is no longer eligible in administering the U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Student Aids (William D Ford Direct Loan). Our status has changed to be a Deferment Only institution.

Find out how to apply for US Financial Aid through La Trobe.

If you’re applying for US Financial Aid for the first time, you’ll need to complete our Financial Aid Application Form.

As part of this form, you must:

  • complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form administered by the US Department of Education
  • undertake entrance counselling
  • complete a Masters Promissory Note (MPN).

These requirements are explained in more detail below, along with step-by-step instructions for applying for US Financial Aid.

Your application will be assessed in accordance with both the US Department of Education legislation and La Trobe’s US Financial Aid policies.

Download the Financial Aid application form [PDF 203KB]

Before you can be considered for US Financial Aid, you must complete a FAFSA form through the US Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid website.

Begin your FAFSA application

If you are a student or a parent of a dependent student, you’ll need to create an FSA ID. Your FSA ID gives you access to the FAFSA form and can be used as your legal signature to complete the form.

Create your FSA ID

One of the final steps of completing the FAFSA is providing La Trobe’s US Department of Education federal university/school code. Our university/school code is G3096100.

After you complete the FAFSA form, you’ll receive a Student Aid Report (SAR). This document lists the information you and your family have provided and tells you what your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) will be for the year.

Please note: You’ll be advised on the SAR print summary document that the Financial Aid Office receives this information in electronic format. However, this is not the case for students attending universities outside the United States.

Please ensure you send us a copy of your SAR by fax (+61 3 9479 3660) or email along with the other information listed in the La Trobe Financial Aid application form. This will allow us to track and process your application more efficiently.

It’s part of our policy that you must complete pre-loan entrance counselling at either undergraduate or postgraduate level (depending on your course) before you receive any funds through US Financial Aid.

If you complete undergraduate studies and then continue into postgraduate studies, you’ll need to do entrance counselling again.

Most students confirm their eligibility for US Financial Aid before they arrive in Australia. If this applies to you, you can access entrance counselling via the Federal Student Aid website.

Access counselling via the Federal Student Aid website.

Your Masters Promissory Note (MPN) is a legal document detailing your rights and responsibilities and the terms of your loan repayment. There are different MPNs for direct and PLUS (Parent and Graduate) loans.

Within the US your MPN can remain valid for up to 10 years, but this isn’t the case when you’re enrolled in a university outside the US. At La Trobe, you'll need to complete a new MPN annually with each new application for financial aid.

Important note regarding interest: When deciding whether you want to pay interest while you study, it’s important you understand the implications of your choice.

For example, if you decide not to pay interest on a loan of US$23,000, when you finish your course you will need to pay back US$30,900, or approximately US$277 per month for the next 10 years. If you choose to pay the interest, you will be paying back US$23,000, or approximately US$199 per month for the next 10 years.

Find the appropriate MPN on the Federal Student Aid website.

Your step-by-step guide to applying for US Financial Aid

For first-time borrowers

Before you begin:

  • Have you received an offer to study at La Trobe? If not, email La Trobe International regarding the application process or your offer status if you’ve already applied.
  • Are you applying to study a nursing program or a Graduate/Postgraduate Diploma or Certificate? If so, you’re unable to apply for Direct Loans. The La Trobe Financial Aid office can help you apply for a private loan through Sallie Mae.
  • Have you received your Cost of Attendance (COA) and Award letter from the Financial Aid office? If not, please contact us by email.

For continuing students

Follow the process below if you’re a current La Trobe student borrowing for your next year of study.

Before you begin:

  • Are you due to finish your course within 1.5 times of the course duration listed on your letter of offer? If not, you’re no longer eligible to receive financial aid. Please email the La Trobe Financial Aid office if you’d like to make an appeal.
  • Are you moving from undergraduate to postgraduate study? Please make sure you’ve completed exit counselling for your undergraduate degree before you proceed with your postgraduate financial aid application. Please note, Honours is considered undergraduate.

How to apply

  • Submit your application to the La Trobe Financial Aid office. These documents will include your completed:

    1. La Trobe Financial Aid Application form
    2. FAFSA
    3. MPN
    4. Entrance counselling application.
  • You'll receive your Cost of Attendance (COA) and Award letter from the Financial Aid Office.

  • Follow the instruction in the COA and Award Letter by confirming the amount you wish to borrow.

  • Email the signed award letter via email

  • Send your offer acceptance and deposit (reduced deposit and full OSHC) to La Trobe International.

    The La Trobe Financial Aid office will start your loan after the signed Award letter has been received and your class commencement has been confirmed.

    If you have questions about the application process, please contact us by email.