If you have already graduated with a bachelor's degree and decide to pursue an additional or second bachelor’s degree, you may be eligible to receive federal student loans. Your loan eligibility will be based on what you have previously borrowed as an undergraduate student, and whether you have reached your aggregate loan limit.
Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FASA)
As you did with your first bachelor’s degree, you will need to submit a FASA. In your FASA, you will need to indicate the following:
- have already completed a bachelor’s degree,
- your grade level is that of a “5th Year/ other undergraduate,” and
- you are working on a “2nd bachelor’s degree.”
The federal loan limits that existed for your first bachelor’s degree are still in effect. Since you are pursuing your second bachelor’s degree, you will be subject to the loan limit that applies for your third year of school and beyond, as well as the aggregate loan limit.
The aggregate loan limit is the total amount of Direct Subsidized and Direct Unsubsidized federal student loans that you may borrow to pursue your undergraduate studies. If the total loan amount you receive over the course of your education reaches the aggregate loan limit, you are not eligible to receive additional loans.
However, if you repay some of your loans to bring your outstanding loan debt below the aggregate loan limit, you could then borrow again, up to the amount of your remaining eligibility under the aggregate loan limit.
You should always check with the financial aid office of the school that you are planning to attend to better understand your financial aid options. They will be able to discuss whether such options, such as federal work study or scholarships, are available to you. For example North Park University in Chicago has a Second Degree Merit Scholarship that is worth up to $9,000 per year, which is awarded to students who have already received a bachelor’s degree with a minimum college GPA of 2.75 .
Based in Eugene, Ore., Duncan Jenkins has been writing finance-related articles since 2008. His specialties include personal finance advice, mortgage/equity loans and credit management. Jenkins obtained his bachelor's degree in English from Clark University.