Graduate PLUS Loan Options if Denied

Generally, students with an adverse credit history may be denied the Federal Direct PLUS Loan by the United States Department of Education. However, in most cases if there are no other extenuating credit conditions, a student has two options to receive the loan:

A. Appeal the credit decision


B. Add an endorser to the loan

These funds will not be disbursed to your student account until you take action. If your loan is denied and you do not wish to utilize your options, please notify our office as soon as possible so your request can be canceled.

Contact Direct Loans at 1.800.557.7394 or go to to find out your best option.

Federal Graduate PLUS Loan Checklist

  1. Complete the PLUS Loan Counseling requirement (which is separate from Entrance Counseling) and a new Master Promissory Note online after you have been approved.
  2. The requirements will be cleared on your Access Illinois Tech portal, typically within one week. Please allow some time for your portal to be updated.
  3. The loan funds typically will disburse to your student account within 1–2 weeks after you complete your approval process and requirements.

For more information about the terms and conditions of Federal Direct PLUSLoans, click here. 

*Federal Graduate PLUS Loan Counseling

The Graduate PLUS Loan Counseling is distinct and not the same as the first-time-borrower Loan Entrance Counseling requirement. The Graduate PLUS Loan Counseling must be done in one login session, as it cannot be saved to be finished at a later time. The counseling is only valid for the credit check approval period of 180 days. If a student chooses to accept another Federal Graduate PLUS Loan after 180 days, they are authorizing another credit check to be performed by Direct Loans. If the credit check results in another denial, the student will need to repeat the entire process by either appealing the credit decision or adding an endorser and completing the Graduate PLUS Loan Counseling again.

First-time borrowers who are denied the Federal Grad PLUS Loan but successfully appeal or add an endorser will have to complete both types of counseling: the Loan Entrance Counseling and PLUS Loan Credit Counseling. Both requirements must be satisfied with Direct Loans online at

Credit Report

You can view your credit report online at This central site allows you to request a free credit report once every 12 months from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Please be aware that other sites may advertise free credit reports, but this is the only site that is sponsored by the federal government and the three nationwide credit reporting agencies. Other sites may charge fees.