The National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS®) tracks your federal Title IV student loans and grants. Among other aid, that includes Stafford, PLUS, and Perkins loans, as well as Pell grants.
If you have multiple federal student loans with multiple loan holders, NSLDS can keep you organized by listing all this information in a single location. The U.S. Department of Education (ED) runs this free database so you can stay on top of your aid—from the time you apply until you finish repaying your federal student loans.
What You Can Find In NSLDS
NSLDS aggregates information from a number of sources. As a result, what you see will depend on what your loan holders provide. For instance, you may see interest rates for some loans, but not others. However, if you have questions about your federal student loans, NSLDS likely has the answers.
By accessing your account, you'll likely be able to find out:
- What kinds of federal loans and grants you have.
- Who your loan holder or servicer is.
- The amount you currently owe in federal student loans.
- Your loans' status (i.e., in repayment, deferred, or in default).
- The loan amounts that were originally given (disbursed) to you.
- The date your loans were issued.
What You Won't Find
While NSLDS holds a ton of helpful information about your federal loans, you won't find a few things in there:
- Some types of federal student aid: Federal medical and nursing student loans are administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) and are not Title IV aid, so they won't show up in NSLDS. Federal work-study funds are from Title IV, but they are not reported to NSLDS.
- Very recent information about your loan status: New loans are reported to NSLDS within 30 days, but after that, they are updated less frequently. That means that NSLDS doesn't always have the most accurate listing of how much you owe. Check with your servicer for the most current information about your student loan status.
- Your private loans: Loan types that are not part of the Direct Loan, FFELP, PLUS, or Perkins programs are not available on NSLDS. You can find any other loans you may have by looking in your credit report or contacting your lenders themselves. You can check your credit report for free once every 12 months at AnnualCreditReport.com.
- Your parents' loans: Parent PLUS loans—money your parents may have borrowed to pay for your education—will be listed in their NSLDS accounts, not yours.
- Collection agency information: If your federal student loans are in default, NSLDS will show who owns them, but not the collection agency your loan holder may have assigned to your account. If you aren't sure who's calling you about what, start by calling the organization that owns the loans or ED's Default Resolution Group.
How To Access NSLDS
Accessing the NSLDS website is easy: All you need to get into your account is your Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID. You may already have an ID from when you filled out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If so, just enter or retrieve that username and password to log in and get started. If you used an FSA Personal Identification Number (PIN) to access and sign your FAFSA, you'll need to create an ID. NSLDS will prompt you to do this.
It's a smart idea to access your NSLDS account at least once a year, ideally at the end of each academic year. That way, you can stay on top of how much you borrowed that year and overall to date. This will ensure you don't hit your loan maximums unintentionally or run into any unpleasant surprises when those loan amounts come due. Plus, if you want to get ahead of your payments (while you're in school or during your grace period), NSLDS can serve up the information you need to do so.
Importing Your Loans On Salt
We can help you use your NSLDS information to stay on top of your loan payments and make a plan for your financial future. Just import your NSLDS loan data into your Salt® account, and we'll analyze how you can make your student loan repayment more manageable!