Private student loans are structured similar to Federal Direct Loans and offer competitive interest rates based on credit.

Repayment options are similar to Federal Direct Loans and offer extended repayment terms of 15 to 20 years. Due to higher interest rates, guarantee fees, and extended repayment options, private student loans can cost the student more than Federal Direct Loans. Private student loans will also increase a student's overall debt, making it difficult to manage repayment of student loans and could adversely affect the student's future credit rating.


When certifying and determining your eligibility for a private student loan, any eligibility (offered or accepted) for federal, state, or institutional financial aid is subtracted from your cost of attendance. The private loan amount requested may not exceed the remaining cost of attendance:

Cost of Attendance  -  Eligibility for Other Financial Aid  =  Private Loan Eligibility

Example: Student applies for a private student loan for $18,000. Your 'cost of attendance' (determined by UWG) is $21,000. Your eligibility (does not indicate amount accepted) for all other financial aid is $10,000. We can only certify your private student loan for up to $11,000.

Helpful Hints

  1. If you plan to enroll less than half-time, please ensure that the lender you select will lend to students that are enrolled less than half-time. 
    • Halftime enrollment for Undergraduate Students is 6 credit hours.
    • Halftime enrollment for Graduate Students is 5 credit hours.
  2. If you are currently on any type of Financial Aid Suspension (e.g., Pace of Progression Suspension, GPA Suspension, Maximum Time-Frame Suspension), please ensure that the lender you select will lend to students that are not currently “Making Satisfactory Academic Progress.”
  3. The loan application process (including school certification) can occasionally take up to 7-10 business days, if not longer. Please plan ahead and act early.
  4. You must be enrolled in courses for us to process your lender’s school certification request.
  5. We identify the term(s) you would like your loan based on the following loan period dates:
    • August-December = Fall Only
    • August-May = Fall-Spring
    • January-May = Spring Only
    • May-July = Summer Only
    • We will not certify loans for Fall-Summer (Summer would have to be its own certification)
    • We will not certify loans that span multiple financial aid years.

If you have any questions, please email

Lender Research Tools

The page linked below with the first button (ELM Select) is in random order and is designed to assist students in identifying private student loans that are available to students at UWG. The page linked below with the second button (Credible) is an online tool that allows students to compare personalized loans from multiple lenders. Students can analyze pre-qualified rates, terms, and eligibility rules side-by-side in just a matter of minutes. Credible and ELM Select are not lenders, and only offer tools for families to make informed private loan decisions. Students should proceed with caution when accessing private student loan opportunities. While we have provided these resources for borrowers, this does not mean that you cannot borrow from other sources. We will certify loans that are not offered on our list and you are not required to select a borrower from the historical list provided below. 

ELM Select Private Lenders List

Credible Comparison Tool

  • UWG is required to reject loan requests for students who have not met the academic conditions that are specified by the lender. The acceptance of the application by a lender does not guarantee eligibility for a loan. 
  • The lists above are not preferred lender lists and are provided only as a courtesy. You may choose a lender of your choice on or off the lists provided. The University of West Georgia receives no benefits from any lender.

Each lender has its own methods for determining repayment options and interest rates, but applying for several private loans can also impact your credit score, so it is important to shop responsibly!

For more information about responsible private loan shopping and how private loan applications can impact your credit, please visit: My FICO: Credit Checks.