The US Department of Education stipulates that the following regulations apply:
Satisfactory academic progress
A student’s eligibility to continue to receive Direct Loan funds depends on them making satisfactory academic progress throughout their course. The Registry will therefore contact each US loans student's tutor before the Spring and Summer disbursements are requested to confirm that each student is in good academic standing and eligible to receive the next instalment of their loan. Please see the LSHTM satisfactory academic progress policy.
Students who are not making satisfactory academic progress will be put on probation and may become ineligible to receive US Federal Loans.
Entrance and exit counselling must be completed at the appropriate times. This can be undertaken at studentLoans.gov. All new students must complete entrance counselling at the time their loan application is being processed. All students must complete exit counselling before the end of each academic year. If a student withdraws early from their course, they will need to take the exit counselling at the point of withdrawal.
Changes to enrolment status
If a student’s enrolment status changes, they must ensure that the Tuition Fees Manager in the Registry is aware of the change. The student’s loan eligibility will then be recalculated to reflect the new Cost of Attendance based on their new enrolment status. Any 'unearned' loan funds may need to be returned to the US Department of Education. The calculation to determine what loan funds need to be returned is called a Return to Title IV. Please see the LSHTM Return to Title IV Policy.
A return to tile IV calculation is required in the following scenarios:
- A student withdraws from their programme of study
- A student takes interruption of study which exceeds 180 days within a particular academic year
- A research student submits their thesis and moves into the examination period
- A student falls below half-time (part-time) study
Other examples of when a student’s loan entitlement will be recalculated, and funds adjusted or returned, include:
- A move from full-time to part-time study
- A return to the US to undertake study, e.g. research study leave (RSL), or summer project
- Changing of split dates for split-study students
- A student gains additional funding (see further details below)
Students must complete their programme within a time frame of no longer than 150% of the published length of the course.
Programs/Study periods based in the US
Any student based in the US for any part of their studies will not be eligible to receive direct loans. Any unit of a programme based in the US for a specific duration will make the student ineligible for direct loans. Research students on research study leave based in the US are not eligible for Direct Loans. This is non-negotiable and is a regulation set by the US Department of Education, not LSHTM.
Students are obliged to inform the Tuition Fees Manager in the Registry of any additional funding that they have secured for their course costs. This includes situations where the funding is gained after the loans have been certified. If this information is provided subsequent to the loan being certified, the student’s loan entitlement will then be recalculated and reduced accordingly. This may result in future disbursements being reduced or overpayments (where all disbursements have been paid) being returned to the US Department of Education.
Borrowers right to cancel
Students will be notified by email before each loan disbursement is requested. They will have the right to cancel or reduce the loan disbursement within a stipulated period before the loan funds are drawn down. If a student wishes to cancel their loan disbursement after it has been received, they will be responsible for returning the funds to the US Department of Education along with any expected accrued interest.
Distance learning courses
Students on distance learning courses are not eligible for Direct Loan funding.