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The Graduate Loan is designed specifically for students pursuing advanced degrees. These loans are intended to help cover the costs associated with tuition, fees, books, and other educational expenses. Eligible programs include the following:

bullet point one   Medical and Health Professions

bullet point two   MBA

bullet point three   Veterinary Medicine

bullet point four   Graduate Programs

bullet point four   Dental Health Professions

bullet point four   Doctoral Programs

bullet point four   Law

bullet point four   Other Accredited Programs


bullet point one   Covers up to 100% of Cost of

bullet point two   0.25% Rate Reduction for
        Auto Debit

bullet point three   Payments can be deferred until
        after graduation

bullet point four   Cosigner Release Option

bullet point three   No Fees

Fixed Rates

2.95% to 6.42% APR

*The lowest stated rate includes an auto-debit reduction of 0.25%.


step one


Get your rate in less than a minute without impacting your credit score.

step two


Enter your information and consider applying with a cosigner. Choose fixed or variable rate and a repayment option that is best for you.

step three

Sign and Accept

Review and sign your application and upload any supporting documents.


The Arkansas Education Loan offers three repayment options so that you can choose what works best for your financial situation.

It is important to understand how much you owe in principal on your loan versus how much you owe in interest. The type of repayment plan you select can significantly impact the amount of interest you pay over the life of the loan. You can calculate the numbers yourself using our student loan repayment calculator.

repayment option comparison graph

Immediate Payment Option

In College You Pay... After College You Pay...
Principal & Interest Principal & Interest

Pay Now

   Requires monthly payments of principal and interest while you’re in school. This option will save you money!

Interest-Only Payment Option

In College You Pay... After College You Pay...
Interest Payments Principal & Interest

Pay Interest During School

   Requires monthly interest payments while you’re in school and during the separation period.

Deferred Payment Option

In College You Pay... After College You Pay...
No Payments Principal & Interest

Pay After Leaving School

   Postpone payments until after you graduate, leave school or drop below half-time enrollment and feature a six-month separation period during which no payments are required. You will pay more overall due to the interest accrual during college and a longer repayment term.


Customer service for your loans will be provided by Aspire Servicing Center. The Arkansas Student Loan Authority will remain the owner of your loan and is available to assist you with any needs.

Consider federal student loans first. When you apply for financial aid by completing the FAFSA, your school will possibly include federal student loans as part of your aid package. If there is a need to access additional funds to assist with college expenses, you and your family should consider Arkansas Education Loans.

Yes, you are required to be an Arkansas resident or attend school in Arkansas. You are eligible to receive an Arkansas Education Loan if you are from another state attending school in Arkansas or if you are an Arkansas resident attending school outside of Arkansas.

To be eligible for an Arkansas Education Student Loan, you must:

  • Be of majority age (e.g., at least 18 years old in Arkansas) pursuant to applicable law at the time of application or be an emancipated minor.
  • Not have defaulted on any private or government student loan.
  • Be attending any eligible nonprofit, Title IV eligible, degree-granting, accredited college or university.
  • Be accepted, enrolled or attending on at least a half-time basis, as defined by the school, and be making satisfactory academic progress in an eligible education program.
  • Be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States. Cosigners must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States and must reside in the United States. Military addresses are considered U.S. addresses if designated as an APO or FPO.

To qualify for the Arkansas Education Student Loan, you or your cosigners must have:

  • Monthly payments for approved credit (mortgages, rent, car loans, credit cards and other forms of credit, including the loan for which the student has submitted an application) that do not exceed 50% of gross monthly income (if a mortgage or rent is not included, debt-to-income ratio cannot exceed 35%). All student loan debt will be treated as though it is in repayment.
  • A FICO score of at least 660. (The FICO score used is the TransUnion FICO Score 8, which is based on data from TransUnion and may be different from other credit scores. FICO is a registered trademark of the Fair Isaac Corporation.)
  • Continuous employment over the last two years. (This requirement may be waived for retirees, disabled persons or those receiving a verified income.)
  • No more than two accounts reporting 30-day delinquencies and no delinquencies of 60 days or more during the previous two years.
  • No charge-offs, repossessions, collection accounts, judgments, foreclosures, garnishments by credit providers or tax liens.
  • No previous bankruptcies.
  • Not defaulted on any private or government student loan.

The Arkansas Education Student Loan must be:

  • No more than the school's "cost of attendance" (tuition and fees, housing, books and supplies, and transportation) minus other financial aid.
  • At least $1,001.
  • No more than $100,000 cumulative.

  • Immediate Payment Plan – payments will begin after the loan is fully disbursed.
  • Interest-Only Payment Plan – payments of interest will begin immediately after the first loan disbursement. 
  • Deferred Payment Plan – payments will be postponed until after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time enrollment.

Use our Student Loan Repayment Calculator to estimate how much your monthly payment will be once you start repayment.

  • The Interest-Only Payment Plan features a six-month grace period once you graduate, leave school or drop below half-time enrollment. Interest only payments are required during the six-month grace period. Your regular principal and interest payments begin after the six-month grace period. 
  • The Deferred Payment Plan features a six-month grace period during which no payments are required. You may make payments during the in-school or grace period, however, payments are not required.

Arkansas Education Loan borrowers can release their cosigners from payment obligations:

  • After 48 consecutive monthly principal and interest payments are received on time.
  • If the borrower meets the underwriting and credit criteria at the time the cosigner release is requested.

  1. Borrower completes application and submits documentation.
  2. School certifies the loan amount and the dates the loan funds will be received.
  3. Borrower electronically acknowledges acceptance of the loan.
  4. ASLA sends loan funds to the school, typically via electronic funds transfer.

Approval will take approximately one week as long as you submit your, or your co-signer’s, most recent paystub and W-2 for the last two years.

Your school will determine the date your loan funds are to be received along with the final loan amount. If the loan is processed before the semester begins, your loan funds will typically be received by the school by the beginning of the semester.

Once the school has certified the loan, you will electronically acknowledge acceptance of the loan. After acceptance of the loan, you will be taken to the self-certification form. Once you indicate that you want to continue with the loan, a three day “right to cancel” period begins (lenders must wait three-business days before the loan funds can be sent to the school – this is known as the “right to cancel” period.)

After the “right to cancel” period, loan funds will be disbursed to your school on the scheduled disbursement date. You can login to your account to check the status of your loan at any time.

Yes, you have 180 days after the academic period has ended to request a Student Loan.

You may earn a 0.25% interest rate reduction on your Arkansas Education Student Loan by making auto-debit payments when you begin principal and interest repayment.

Interest capitalizes (interest is added to your principal balance) at:

  • The end of any qualifying deferment period for all loan options.
  • The start of repayment status for loans that do not require principal and interest or interest-only payments while the borrower is enrolled and during the separation period.
  • The final disbursement of loans that require monthly principal and interest payments while the borrower is enrolled in school and that have more than one disbursement.

You may qualify for assistance based on your situation. Please call us as soon as possible if you experience issues, so we can help you avoid delinquency.

In the unfortunate event of a borrower’s death or qualifying total and permanent disability, Arkansas Student Loan Authority will forgive the loan and not require cosigners or the borrower’s estate to satisfy the loan obligation. A tax professional or the IRS can provide additional information about possible tax consequences of loan forgiveness.

No; in the event of a cosigner’s death or qualifying total and permanent disability, you will not be required to find a new cosigner for an existing loan. In addition, if a cosigner suffers a qualifying total and permanent disability, Arkansas Student Loan Authority will release the cosigner from his or her obligation.