Graduate Student Instructions

To avoid deadline penalties, please complete all of these tasks by the following deadlines.

  • New Students - Within two weeks of your Award Notification date or the date you submitted your TU enrollment contract, whichever is later.
  • Returning Students - Within two weeks of your Award Notification date.

1. Carefully Read All of Your Award Guide

Your Award Guide explains your aid offers, how they were calculated and the terms and conditions of your awards. You are required to read this because it explains your aid responsibilities and the terms of your awards.

2. Authorize Disclosure of Your Aid Information

Federal law prohibits TU from discussing your financial aid with your parents or others without your authorization. To grant authorization, please complete our Release of Information Form, which is available from Forms & Online Services.

3. Accept/Decline Your Aid and Choose Your Loan Amounts

FROM TOWSON ONLINE SERVICES

  • Log in to Towson Online Services
  • Choose Self Service and Student Center
  • Below the Finances bar, choose Accept/Decline Awards

FROM THE TU MOBILE APP

  • Choose MyTU
  • Choose Finances/Financial Aid
  • Choose View/Accept/Decline Awards

Access the TU Mobile App.

4. Calculate How Much You Want to Borrow This Year

You can borrow loans to cover both your TU charges and your other living and personal expenses for this academic year (Fall & Spring).  Review our estimated Cost of Attendance Budgets or review our current rates for tuition, room, and board

Your Award Notification lists the maximum amounts you can borrow from the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan program.   If you want to borrow more than that, you may want to also borrow a Graduate PLUS loan.

INTEREST RATES

For the federal student loans for graduate students, Direct Unsubsidized Loans have the best interest rates, and Graduate PLUS loans have the 2nd lowest rates.

  • For current rates, visit StudentLoans.gov.
  • Private loan rates vary based on lender and credit scores. 

Loan Origination Fees

The following origination fees will be deducted from federal loan disbursements for loans first disbursed on or after 10/1/2016 and before 10/1/2017:

  • Federal Direct Unsubsidized loans: 1.069%
  • Federal GRAD PLUS Loans: 4.276%

For loans disbursed after 10/1/2017, those new rates will be listed at StudentLoans.gov.


5. Borrowing Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans

First, accept/decline your direct loan offers and choose your loan amounts at Towson Online Services. If this is the first time you are borrowing a direct loan at TU:

  • Go to StudentLoans.gov.
  • Complete a Direct Student Loan Entrance Counseling session.
  • Complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN).

If you need to change your loan amount after you accept it, submit a TU Loan Change Form from Forms & Online Services.

6. Borrowing Federal Graduate Student PLUS Loans

Follow the TU Graduate Student PLUS Loan Application instructions.


7. Check Your TU Email Account Every Week

It is extremely important to regularly check your TU student email. We only send most aid notices to your email account. You (the student) must read all aid emails and complete all aid tasks.

If you already have a non-TU email account that you check regularly, we strongly encourage you to forward all your TU email to that account. Follow these Gmail forwarding instructions.


8. Check Your “To-Do-List” Every Week

New items may be added each week as we process your file. Please submit or request all To-Do-List items within two weeks of our first request.   


9. Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Data Verification

If your To-Do-List requests verification documents, promptly submit the worksheet and IRS tax documentation. Please act promptly! It can take over six weeks after you request tax data to receive the required documentation from the IRS.

Late documents often cause a $150 late payment fine and delay financial aid refunds.  


10. Will You Attend Full-time for the Fall and Spring Terms?

NOTE: Full-time students take 9 (or more) units for master's degrees and certificates and 6 (or more units) for doctoral programs.

  • If Yes — No action required. Your aid offers are already based on an assumption that you will attend full-time.
  • If No — If you will attend part-time, you MUST submit a Course Load Change Form or your financial aid disbursements and any aid refunds will be delayed. Visit Forms & Online Services.


11. Review/Update Your Housing Status

On your FAFSA, what housing status did you list for TU?

  • On-campus
  • Off-campus
  • Living with parents

If your TU housing status changes at any time, you must notify TU and MHEC.

To notify TU, you must submit a Housing Verification Form from Forms & Online Services.

If you have any MHEC aid, you must also update your status in their MDCAPS system.


12. Will You Receive any other Aid/Benefits that Are Not Listed on Your TU Aid Notification?

If yes, you must submit a Notice of Additional Resources Form from Forms & Online Services. Examples of aid include private scholarships, tuition waivers and Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) aid.


13. Are You Eligible for any Financial Need Adjustments that Could Increase Your Aid? 

See Special Financial Conditions.


14. Bill Payment, Aid Disbursement and Financial Aid Refunds   

The Bursar’s Office will bill you for one term at a time. Your online eBill will include tuition, fees, and other miscellaneous charges for each term. If you will live on campus, it will also include room and board charges.

If your eBill does not list enough authorized aid to pay all of your charges, then you must make other arrangements to pay your full bill balance by your bill due date.

If your total term aid exceeds your term charges, the Bursar’s Office will send you a refund. For more information about billing and payments, please visit the Bursar's Office.

15. Optional - Use of Funds form

When we disburse your aid, we will automatically use it to pay all of your TU charges for this term unless you choose to restrict which charges we can pay with your aid funds by submitting the optional Use of Funds formFor more information, see the Use of Funds form at Forms & Online Services.

Contact

Office of Financial Aid

Location
Enrollment Services
Room 339
All Contacts & Resources
Hours
Mon-Thurs, 8:30 am-5 pm; Fri, 8:30 am-4:30 pm (Call Center)

Mon-Thurs, 8 am-5 pm; Fri, 8 am-4:30 pm (Reception Desk)
Phone
410-704-4236
Fax
410-704-2584