How Money Gets to the School

In most cases, you’ll never handle the proceeds of your student loans. Find out where it goes instead.

Financial Aid Disbursement

What is disbursement and how does it affect me?

Most forms of student financial assistance are not disbursed (given) directly to the student, but rather sent to your school, generally by electronic transfer. Loans and financial aid are disbursed at the beginning of each semester or quarter, and are credited to your student account against your tuition bill.

Disbursement of overages. When the loan is slightly larger than the amount you owe the school, you may get back the extra funds, which you can use for living expenses or to purchase books or other supplies. You’ll get this “overage,” the small difference between what you owe the school and the loan amount, in the form of a financial aid or student loan disbursement check or credit to your student account.

Notification requirements. Even when you never see the funds yourself, your school has to let you know whenever they receive a loan payment. Formal notification must include other information, such as the date and disbursement amount, and your rights—if any—to cancel the loan, and how you would go about that.

Helpful Tools & Information
FAQs Answers to frequently asked questions about student loans.
Student Loan Glossary A quick guide to various terms you’ll encounter in the student loan process.
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