Graduate Architecture Incoming Students 2014-15

If you have been admitted into a Tulane University School of Architecture graduate level program for the upcoming academic year, educational loans are one type of financial aid (other types are gift aid or federal work-study eligibility). We would like to explain how Tulane University Financial Aid might package educational loan eligibility for you should you find you need that sort of educational financing. Please note that the deadline to complete all loan processing is four weeks before the end of each semester, but most students complete loan processing so that the loan funds arrive earlier than that.

Click here for the 2014-2015 Cost of Attendance charts for the first semester and first academic year of the various programs.

The Cost of Attendance (see link above to find the Cost of Attendance for your program) represents your educational loan eligibility for the semesters (which may be disbursed as early as the first week of classes), but is reduced by any gift aid you may receive from any source. Financial aid (including loans) for the fall-spring academic year are disbursed half in the fall and half in the spring. Financial aid for the summer is generally credited as one disbursement.

Once you are admitted, you should consider the Cost of Attendance and begin to decide if you need to borrow any of your educational loan eligibility, and if so, how much.

You must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to be considered for any federal student loan. The 2014-2015 FAFSA is required to evaluate federal loan eligibility for fall 2014 and spring 2015, and asks for your tax year 2013 figures. To begin the FAFSA process, go to

If the summer of 2014 is the first semester, the 2013-2014 FAFSA is required to evaluate the most advantageous federal loan eligibility for summer 2014, and asks for your tax year 2012 figures. To begin the FAFSA process, go to

As stated above, at this time, you should begin to decide if you need to borrow any of your educational loan eligibility, and if so, how much. If the amount exceeds $20,500 (the maximum yearly amount of Federal Stafford Loan for graduate level students), take time to make sure you pass the credit criteria for the Federal Graduate PLUS Loan for the 2014-2015 aid year (the 2014-15 award year process will open on April 14, 2014). An instant credit decision online may be obtained after your completion of the application found at (see steps to apply in the loan section of this website, as well as steps below). Please be aware that Tulane cannot cover a shortfall due to the inability to qualify for credit-based educational loans, so please plan accordingly.

Generally, those who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents are ineligible for U.S. federal student loans. Private alternative educational student loans may be available. Please explore our loan section for more information.

If you have filed a FAFSA and your social security number has been provided to Gibson Online, the Tulane Financial Aid Office will contact you at your Tulane email address when it is time for you to fill in the amount of the loan eligibility you would like to borrow on our online student system Gibson Online. In the meantime, please review this website for a description of loan terms and processing steps.

If you have any questions concerning the aforementioned information, please feel free to contact Tulane University Financial Aid at 504.865.5723 or by e-mail at The graduate level Architecture student financial aid counselors for the 2014-15 academic year will likely be either Jennifer Beck, Claudia Flotte, Jonathan Jouet, Ternell Smith and/or Catherine Simoneaux, and the direct email for each is under Contacts on this website.

Graduate PLUS Application Process

Note: This process is not open for the 2014-2015 academic year until April 14, 2014 at the earliest. In order to fill out the online Graduate PLUS loan application and sign the master promissory note, the student must have a Department of Education PIN (which is also required to file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid). If the student does not have a PIN number, one must be obtained at before completing the online application.

The Department of Education”s PLUS Application site combines the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan application and Master Promissory Note under one process.

Step 1: Launch the Department of Education”s Federal Direct Graduate PLUS application

  • Click on "Sign In" button on and enter your Department of Education PIN and information

Step 2: Click “Start PLUS Application Process”

  • Click the "Request a PLUS Loan" link and read the information provided
  • Click the "Graduate PLUS" link to begin the application.

Step 3: Enter Student Information

  • Enter the personal information and school information.

Step 4: Review Data Entered

  • Next you will be prompted to verify the information that has been entered. Correct any information that was entered incorrectly.

Step 5: Credit Check

  • Federal Direct Graduate PLUS loans are based upon credit. To qualify for the loan, the student applicant must first pass a credit check. Next, agree to the terms provided and click submit. An instant online credit decision will be provided.
  • If the credit check ends in Approval, proceed to Step 6: Begin the Federal Direct PLUS Master Promissory Note (MPN).
  • If the credit check ends in Denial, proceed to "What to do if your PLUS Loan is denied," where you will be given options that include appealing the credit decision, obtaining an endorser, or not pursuing the loan at this time. Select the appropriate answer.

Step 6: Begin the Federal Direct PLUS Master Promissory Note (MPN)

  • The MPN must be completed in order for the loan to be finally processed.
  • Read the information provided upon completion of a successful credit check.

Step 7: Complete the MPN

  • The Federal Direct PLUS Master Promissory Note will require the completion of additional student information and personal references. Enter the required information then read and agree to the terms and conditions of the loan.

Step 8: Review and Sign the MPN

  • Review the information provided, complete the signature boxes and click “Sign.”

Step 9: Print the MPN for your records

Step 10: Complete the Entrance Counseling Session

  • At the end of the application process, the student will be directed to complete the entrance counseling session at the same website

Graduate PLUS Loan Certification and Disbursement

The Department of Education will notify Tulane University of approved PLUS applications. Once we receive the application, we will certify the loan for the requested amount or the remaining eligibility (Cost of Attendance minus other aid received). The amount processed can be viewed in the student”s Gibson Online Financial Aid tab. Disbursement of the loan takes place at the beginning of each semester for which funds are intended for the year. Students may request changes to their Graduate PLUS Loan by contacting their Tulane Financial Aid Counselor to discuss the changes.

Graduate PLUS General Information

The Graduate PLUS Loan is a loan for graduate and professional students only, and it is applied as a supplement to the Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan.

Unlike the Stafford Loan, the Graduate PLUS Loan requires a credit check. The approval process is generally less rigorous that private student loans, and most students are approved. Students who are declined for a Graduate PLUS Loan, based on adverse credit history, may still secure approval through an endorser.

The interest rate is fixed for each loan and is based on the disbursement date. Graduate PLUS Loans disbursed on or after 7/1/13 but before 7/1/14 have a fixed interest rate of 6.41%. As with Stafford Loans, students may defer repayment while enrolled at least half-time, although interest accrues on the loan while the student is in school. Eligibility for the loan is not based on financial need.

Once the annual Stafford Loan eligibility (generally $20,500 for graduate level Architecture students) is reached, the Graduate PLU is awarded for any remaining eligibility under the Cost of Attendance (COA minus another other financial aid, including the Stafford Loan).

Eligibility for disbursement of a Federal Graduate PLUS Loan:

  • The student must be enrolled at least half time as a graduate or professional student
  • The student must have a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file with Tulane University
  • The student must meet all other Title IV Federal Financial Aid Program requirements (i.e. quality assurance requirements, academic progress, and eligible citizenship categories)
  • The student should utilize Stafford Loans before utilizing a Graduate PLU Loan
  • The student must pass a credit check performed by Direct Loans or use a valid loan endorser
  • The student must reapply each year
  • A Master Promissory Note and the Entrance Counseling Session both must be completed online using the student”s FAFSA PIN

Page last modified on April 14, 2014.

University Financial Aid, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5723