Towson University offers scholarships, grants, loans and work-study programs. These programs are funded by the U.S. Department of Education, the state of Maryland, and Towson University. Scholarships generally use merit or academic achievement as the main criterion. Most grant programs are need based, and loan programs exist for students with and without financial needl. All of these programs help students pay the difference between the cost of education and the amount that they (and their parents, if they are dependent students) can contribute.