Borrower Counseling Group
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Mon - Thu: 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Fri: 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Sun: 11:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
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November 12, 2010
Understanding Your Student Loan Details
The National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) holds all of your federal student loan information—as well as some unfamiliar student loan terminology.
When accessing personal information in NSLDSSM, you’ll come across terms describing your original loan details and how much you owe now. Understanding these different terms will help you successfully keep tabs on your student loans.
Your Original Loan Details
- Loan amount. The overall amount an agency or school approved for your loan. It’s possible that this entire amount may not have been disbursed.
- Loan date. For loans in the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program (DL), the loan date is the date the loan was originally approved. For Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) loans, this usually refers to the date the loan was guaranteed.
- Disbursed amount or disbursement amount. The net amount, in dollars, of each loan disbursement.
- Disbursement date. The date when a loan disbursement occurred, or the date an overpayment was reported.
Your Current Loan Details
- Outstanding principal or outstanding principal balance. The dollar amount of your loan balance—which may include interest that has been capitalized.
- Outstanding interest or outstanding interest balance. The dollar amount of the accrued, unpaid interest on a loan.
- Canceled amount. The dollar amount of a non-Perkins loan that was canceled, either before or after disbursement. Note: A Perkins loan can be entirely or partially canceled if you work in one the following areas.
- Law enforcement
- Public service
- The National Head Start Association
- Loan status. A 2-letter code that represents the current status of your loan. The loan's current holder determines the status. Some loan status examples include:
- Status effective date. The date your current Loan Status became effective.
NSLDS is updated regularly with information from schools, servicers, guaranty agencies, DL, and other U.S. Department of Education programs. If your information is incorrect, it is likely wrong within the agency that reported it to NSLDS. To fix your information, contact:
- Your guaranty agency or servicer for FFELP loans.
- Your servicer for DL loans.
- Your school for Perkins loans.
Federal Loan Programs
There are 2 main federal student loan programs—FFELP and DL. The key difference between the programs is where the funding comes from:
- In FFELP, students borrow from a private lender or bank.
- With DL, students borrow from the U.S. Department of Education (ED). As of July 1, 2010, all new federal student loans come from DL.
In both programs, there are some key industry players that you need to be aware of. You can find out which program your loans came from by accessing NSLDS.