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Graduate Prospective Students


For Prospective Students:
Phone: 202-885-6500
Fax: 202-885-1025

For Current or Continuing Students:
Phone: 202-885-8000

Contact Information

Required Applications

Graduate students enrolled at least half time in a Master's or PhD program may be eligible for federal loans and/or federal work study. To apply, students must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). There is no deadline, and the FAFSA will be reviewed on a rolling basis as it is received. When completing your application, be sure to enter the American University FAFSA code 001434 in the college release section. 

Merit Scholarships

Scholarships are awarded by the academic departments. The Office of Financial Aid does not administer these awards. Please visit your school's merit scholarship web page for further information.

Federal Student Loans

Students enrolled in a graduate program may be eligible for a Federal Direct Loan to finance part of their education. Eligibility is awarded based on the program cost minus any amounts of merit scholarship, company sponsorship, tuition remission, etc. received. For program costs not met by other resources, a student can receive up to $20,500 per year in Direct Unsubsidized Loans. For more information about this loan and other federal loan options, please visit the Department of Education lender website at

Awarding Timeline

The Office of Financial Aid coordinates with the graduate admissions office to send award letters once admissions and merit scholarship decisions have been made. If you have already submitted your FAFSA, award letters will become available online via the AU student portal throughout March and April. You will receive an email from the Office of Financial Aid once this is available for your review.

Continuing students will receive their award letters via the student portal in late June after spring grades have been received and reviewed. Missing grades may delay the arrival of your award letter.

Additional Forms

You may be asked to download and complete a Verification Worksheet or other documentation as needed to complete your aid application. Do not complete these forms unless asked to do so by the Office of Financial Aid.