Study: 10 Most Affordable Public and Private HBCUs in the US

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Historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) provided students of color with access to higher education during a time of legal segregation.

It wasn’t until the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that segregation in public places was banned and employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, and religion was outlawed.

Today, there are over 100 HBCUs across the U.S. granting degrees to students of all racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Many of these schools have managed to keep costs low despite having smaller endowments than historically white colleges, according to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund.

Annual tuition and fees at Spelman College, for instance, the most expensive school on this list, add up to $28,181. That’s several thousand dollars less than the national average of $32,410 for private four-year colleges.

To learn more about costs at HBCUs, Student Loan Hero examined data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) on tuition and fees for the 2017-18 school year.

Here are the most affordable public, private, and community colleges and the full list of HBCUs from least to most expensive.

5 most affordable public HBCUs

When you research colleges, you’ll typically find the lowest tuition and fees at public colleges and universities in your state. Out-of-state students, however, might find that the costs aren’t much lower than they would be at a private college or university.

Remember that those costs are just the sticker price. You might qualify for grants, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid, all of which could decrease your net cost of attendance.

It’s also important to factor in cost of living, which can vary widely from, say, a rural town in Mississippi to downtown Houston.

Here are five public HBCUs with the lowest tuition costs for in-state students for the 2017-18 school year and some insight about the cost of living in each area.

1. Elizabeth City State University: Elizabeth City, North Carolina

In-state tuition and fees: $4,986
Out-of-state tuition and fees: $18,130
Total undergraduate enrollment: 1,310

North Carolina students will find low tuition prices at Elizabeth City State University, a public institution in the University of North Carolina system that admits 60% of students who apply every year.

Founded in 1891, the university offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in a variety of subjects, the most popular of which include education, business administration and management, and criminal justice.

If you choose Elizabeth City State University, you’ll find that the cost of living in North Carolina is lower than the national average. The Cost of Living Index (COLI) by the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) gives the state a cost-of-living score of 90.2 (with 100 being the national average).

Note that out-of-state students might not find Elizabeth City State University to be an economical option, as four years of tuition could add up to nearly $73,000. If you’re considering a state school, choosing one in your state of residency likely would be easier on your wallet.

2. Fayetteville State University: Fayetteville, North Carolina

In-state tuition and fees: $5,183
Out-of-state tuition and fees: $16,791
Undergraduate enrollment: 5,393

Fayetteville State University is another affordable option in the University of North Carolina system. This midsized university admits 68% of students who apply, and some of its most popular majors include biology, business, health care, psychology, and criminal justice.

Fayetteville State University’s student population is nearly five times larger than that of Elizabeth City State University, but its class sizes remain relatively small. According to NCES, the school has a student-to-faculty ratio of 18-to-1.

3. University of the Virgin Islands: Virgin Islands

In-state tuition and fees: $5,235
Out-of-state tuition and fees: $14,496
Undergraduate enrollment: 2,112

The University of the Virgin Islands in Charlotte Amalie on St. Thomas welcomes students from throughout the Caribbean, the U.S. mainland, and the rest of the world, but it reserves its lowest tuition rates for Virgin Islanders.

Some students might choose to attend the university’s Albert A. Sheen campus on St. Croix, which costs the same for residents but slightly less for nonresidents — $13,834 per year.

Both campuses offer degrees ranging from associate degrees to doctorates in a variety of subjects. That said, the cost of living can be high on St. Thomas and St. Croix, so prospective students will need to prepare accordingly.

4. Harris-Stowe State University: Saint Louis, Missouri

In-state tuition and fees: $5,340
Out-of-state tuition and fees: $9,973
Undergraduate enrollment: 1,442

Harris-Stowe State University is an all-undergraduate institution that offers certificates and bachelor’s degrees to a small student body. It offers 43 majors, minors, and certificate programs in STEM subjects, health care, public service, business, and education.

Along with reasonable yearly tuition rates, students will enjoy a cost of living that’s lower than average. According to COLI, Missouri’s cost-of-living score is 88.1.

5. Albany State University: Albany, Georgia

In-state tuition and fees: $5,675
Out-of-state tuition and fees: $16,136
Undergraduate enrollment: 6,262

Rounding out our list of public HBCUs with the lowest tuition costs for in-state students is Albany State University in Albany, Georgia. This medium-sized school offers degrees across disciplines, including health professions, arts and humanities, business, education, and science and technology.

While you earn your degree, you also might enjoy the fact that Albany has a relatively low cost-of-living score of 90.8, according to COLI. Housing costs are especially low, with a COLI score of 71.9.

5 private 4-year HBCUs with the lowest tuition costs

While public institutions tend to offer lower prices to in-state students, private ones typically charge residents and nonresidents the same rates. Believe it or not, attending a private college on the list below could be more affordable than attending a state school as a nonresident.

If you’re considering a private HBCU, the following schools offer the lowest annual tuition costs.

1. Simmons College of Kentucky: Louisville, Kentucky

Tuition and fees: $5,310
Undergraduate enrollment: 216

Simmons College of Kentucky is a small “institution of biblical higher education” in a big city of more than 620,000 people.

It has a long history that dates back to 1879. In the 1950s, the college primarily offered theological courses, but more recently, it has expanded its offerings to include business entrepreneurship, cross-cultural communication, and sociology.

Along with low tuition costs, students can enjoy Louisville’s lower-than-average cost of living. COLI gives the city a score of 92.5.

2. Selma University: Selma, Alabama

Tuition and fees: $7,115
Undergraduate enrollment: 311

Selma University is a Christian Bible college founded in 1878 that prepares students for Christian ministry. It offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in fields such as Bible and pastoral ministry and Bible and Christian education.

Alabama has a lower cost of living than the national average. According to COLI, the state’s cost-of-living score is 87.

3. Clinton College: Rock Hill, South Carolina

Tuition and fees: $7,949
Undergraduate enrollment: 170

Founded in 1894, Clinton College is a small liberal arts institution with a mission to “help all students lead moral, spiritual, and productive lives.” It offers programs in liberal arts, business administration, religious studies, early childhood development, and natural sciences.

Not only are tuition and fees low, but living costs in South Carolina are reasonable as well. COLI gives the state a cost-of-living score of 92.9.

4. Southwestern Christian College: Terrell, Texas

Tuition and fees: $8,136
Undergraduate enrollment: 159

Southwestern Christian College in Terrell, Texas, offers associate degrees in liberal arts and bachelor’s degrees in Bible and religious education. Students might be able to lower costs further with grants or scholarships for Texas students.

5. Paul Quinn College: Dallas, Texas

Tuition and fees: $8,495
Undergraduate enrollment: 519

Paul Quinn College admits 54% of students who apply, making it one of the more selective schools on this list.

It’s also one of the few schools on this list located in a major city. But students don’t have to worry about high prices in this urban area. COLI gives Dallas a cost-of-living score of 100.8, which is on par with the national average.

Among the college’s offerings are programs in business administration, health and wellness, legal studies, liberal arts, and religious studies. This accredited school has been serving students since 1872.

Consider 2 years at a community college to save money

You can find public and private HBCUs with low tuition costs, but your most affordable option might be a community college.

To save money, some students spend two years at a community college before transferring to a four-year school to earn a bachelor’s degree.

If that plan appeals to you, consider the following community colleges that charge state residents less than $4,500 and nonresidents less than $8,000 in tuition and fees per year.

1. Coahoma Community College: Clarksdale, Mississippi

In-state annual tuition costs: $2,803
Out-of-state annual tuition costs: $2,803

2. Gadsden State Community College: Gadsden, Alabama

In-state annual tuition costs: $3,600
Out-of-state annual tuition costs: $6,456

3.Southern University at Shreveport: Shreveport, Louisiana

In-state annual tuition costs: $4,184
Out-of-state annual tuition costs: $7,432

4. Shelton State Community College: Tuscaloosa, Alabama

In-state annual tuition costs: $4,189
Out-of-state annual tuition costs: $7,759

5. Trenholm State Community College: Montgomery, Alabama

In-state annual tuition costs: $4,350
Out-of-state annual tuition costs: $7,920

Full list of HBCUs: Ranked from least to most expensive

Here’s the full list of HBCUs in the U.S. and their tuition and fees for in-state and out-of-state students for the 2017-18 school year. Note that this list includes only schools that offer undergraduate degrees; it doesn’t include HBCUs that offer only graduate degrees, such as master’s degrees and doctorates.

College or university Location Annual in-state tuition and fees Annual out-of-state tuition and fees
Coahoma Community College Clarksdale, Mississippi $2,803 $2,803
Gadsden State Community College Gadsden, Alabama $3,600 $6,456
Southern University at Shreveport Shreveport, Louisiana $4,184 $7,432
Shelton State Community College Tuscaloosa, Alabama $4,189 $7,759
Trenholm State Community College Montgomery, Alabama $4,350 $7,920
J. F. Drake State Community and Technical College Huntsville, Alabama $4,410 $7,980
Bishop State Community College Mobile, Alabama $4,440 $8,010
Lawson State Community College — Birmingham Campus Birmingham, Alabama $4,440 $8,010
Shorter College North Little Rock, Arkansas $4,904 $4,904
Elizabeth City State University Elizabeth City, North Carolina $4,986 $18,130
Fayetteville State University Fayetteville, North Carolina $5,183 $16,791
University of the Virgin Islands Charlotte Amalie, Virgin Islands $5,235 $14,496
University of the Virgin Islands — Albert A. Sheen St. Croix, Virgin Islands $5,235 $13,834
Simmons College of Kentucky Louisville, Kentucky $5,310 $5,310
Harris-Stowe State University Saint Louis, Missouri $5,340 $9,973
Albany State University Albany, Georgia $5,675 $16,136
Denmark Technical College Denmark, South Carolina $5,700 $9,450
Savannah State University Savannah, Georgia $5,743 $16,204
University of the District of Columbia Washington, D.C. $5,756 $12,092
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University Tallahassee, Florida $5,785 $17,725
Langston University Langston, Oklahoma $5,936 $13,286
Winston-Salem State University Winston-Salem, North Carolina $5,941 $16,188
Central State University Wilberforce, Ohio $6,246 $8,096
North Carolina Central University Durham, North Carolina $6,399 $19,106
Southern University at New Orleans New Orleans, Louisiana $6,421 $15,322
Mississippi Valley State University Itta Bena, Mississippi $6,422 $6,422
North Carolina A&T State University Greensboro, North Carolina $6,526 $19,416
Fort Valley State University Fort Valley, Georgia $6,658 $19,738
Bluefield State College Bluefield, West Virginia $6,728 $13,032
Alcorn State University Lorman, Mississippi $6,888 $6,888
Selma University Selma, Alabama $7,115 $7,115
St. Philip’s College San Antonio, Texas $7,170 $13,770
University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Pine Bluff, Arkansas $7,408 $13,738
Grambling State University Grambling, Louisiana $7,435 $16,733
Coppin State University Baltimore, Maryland $7,474 $13,622
West Virginia State University Institute, West Virginia $7,546 $16,550
Jackson State University Jackson, Mississippi $7,621 $18,314
Lincoln University Jefferson City, Missouri $7,632 $14,172
Morgan State University Baltimore, Maryland $7,766 $17,832
Tennessee State University Nashville, Tennessee $7,776 $21,132
Delaware State University Dover, Delaware $7,868 $16,904
Clinton College Rock Hill, South Carolina $7,949 $7,949
University of Maryland Eastern Shore Princess Anne, Maryland $8,042 $18,048
Bowie State University Bowie, Maryland $8,064 $18,653
Southwestern Christian College Terrell, Texas $8,136 $8,136
Kentucky State University Frankfort, Kentucky $8,184 $19,638
Paul Quinn College Dallas, Texas $8,495 $8,495
Southern University and A&M College Baton Rouge, Louisiana $8,666 $18,080
Virginia State University Petersburg, Virginia $8,726 $19,572
Arkansas Baptist College Little Rock, Arkansas $8,760 $8,760
Norfolk State University Norfolk, Virginia $9,036 $20,478
Texas Southern University Houston, Texas $9,173 $21,623
Rust College Holly Springs, Mississippi $9,700 $9,700
Virginia University of Lynchburg Lynchburg, Virginia $9,800 $9,800
Alabama A&M University Normal, Alabama $9,857 $18,236
Prairie View A&M University Prairie View, Texas $9,959 $23,488
Texas College Tyler, Texas $10,008 $10,008
American Baptist College Nashville, Tennessee $10,074 $10,074
Tougaloo College Tougaloo, Mississippi $10,600 $10,600
Lane College Jackson, Tennessee $10,690 $10,690
South Carolina State University Orangeburg, South Carolina $10,740 $21,120
Stillman College Tuscaloosa, Alabama $10,792 $10,792
Alabama State University Montgomery, Alabama $11,068 $19,396
LeMoyne-Owen College Memphis, Tennessee $11,196 $11,196
Lincoln University Lincoln University, Pennsylvania $11,379 $17,151
Jarvis Christian College Hawkins, Texas $11,720 $11,720
Miles College Fairfield, Alabama $11,794 $11,794
Cheyney University of Pennsylvania Cheyney, Pennsylvania $12,104 $18,386
Wiley College Marshall, Texas $12,306 $12,306
Talladega College Talladega, Alabama $12,340 $12,340
Voorhees College Denmark, South Carolina $12,630 $12,630
Philander Smith College Little Rock, Arkansas $12,714 $12,714
Allen University Columbia, South Carolina $13,140 $13,140
Wilberforce University Wilberforce, Ohio $13,250 $13,250
Morris College Sumter, South Carolina $13,458 $13,458
Edward Waters College Jacksonville, Florida $13,525 $13,525
Paine College Augusta, Georgia $14,226 $14,226
Huston-Tillotson University Austin, Texas $14,346 $14,346
Bethune-Cookman University Daytona Beach, Florida $14,410 $14,410
Florida Memorial University Miami Gardens, Florida $15,536 $15,536
Claflin University Orangeburg, South Carolina $16,480 $16,480
Shaw University Raleigh, North Carolina $16,480 $16,480
Oakwood University Huntsville, Alabama $16,720 $16,720
Virginia Union University Richmond, Virginia $17,448 $17,448
Livingstone College Salisbury, North Carolina $17,763 $17,763
Saint Augustine’s University Raleigh, North Carolina $17,890 $17,890
Dillard University New Orleans, Louisiana $17,917 $17,917
Johnson C. Smith University Charlotte, North Carolina $18,236 $18,236
Bennett College Greensboro, North Carolina $18,513 $18,513
Benedict College Columbia, South Carolina $19,958 $19,958
Fisk University Nashville, Tennessee $21,480 $21,480
Clark Atlanta University Atlanta, Georgia $21,892 $21,892
Tuskegee University Tuskegee, Alabama $22,170 $22,170
Xavier University of Louisiana New Orleans, Louisiana $23,606 $23,606
Hampton University Hampton, Virginia $25,441 $25,441
Howard University Washington, D.C. $25,697 $25,697
Morehouse College Atlanta, Georgia $27,278 $27,278
Spelman College Atlanta, Georgia $28,181 $28,181

Don’t forget to factor in living expenses

Although these figures reflect tuition and fees, they don’t take into account additional costs of going to college, such as books, room and board, and food.

Plus, living expenses can vary widely from one location to another. Rent and groceries cost more in the Virgin Islands than they do in Alabama, for instance, which could make Selma University a less expensive option overall than the University of the Virgin Islands despite the fact that Selma University has higher tuition costs.

Most colleges offer estimates of your net cost of attendance on their websites, so make sure you look for that data as you research your options.

Remember that you can always take steps to reduce costs, such as buying books secondhand and living at home instead of in a dorm. You also can earn money by finding a part-time job.

Explore your financial aid options

If, like most people, you can’t afford to pay tuition and fees upfront, chances are you won’t have to. A variety of need-based and non-need-based financial aid can help you cover costs.

According to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, over 75% of students at HBCUs rely on Pell Grants and almost 13% take out PLUS Loans to pay for college.

By submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, you could qualify for grants, work-study, and federal student loans with low interest rates. Many schools and private organizations also offer scholarships.

Once you’ve exhausted your options for gift aid (aid you don’t have to pay back), you might consider a private student loan. But make sure you understand the terms of your loan and what repayment will look like.

By making a thoughtful choice about borrowing, you can avoid taking on too much debt for school. And by staying on top of deadlines for financial aid, you’ll be prepared to pay for your education at one of the country’s historically black colleges or universities.

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1 Important Disclosures for College Ave.

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College Ave Student Loans products are made available through either Firstrust Bank, member FDIC or M.Y. Safra Bank, FSB, member FDIC. All loans are subject to individual approval and adherence to underwriting guidelines. Program restrictions, other terms, and conditions apply.

Rates shown are for the College Ave Undergraduate Loan product and include autopay discount. The 0.25% auto-pay interest rate reduction applies as long as a valid bank account is designated for required monthly payments. Variable rates may increase after consummation.
This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a freshman borrower who selects the Deferred Repayment Option with a 10-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 8.35% fixed Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $179.18 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $21,501.54. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary. This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a first year graduate student borrower who selects the Deferred Repayment Option with a 10-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 7.10% fixed Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $141.66 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $16,699.21. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.

Information advertised valid as of 7/22/2021. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation. Approved interest rate will depend on the creditworthiness of the applicant(s), lowest advertised rates only available to the most creditworthy applicants and require selection of full principal and interest payments with the shortest available loan term.

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3 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.

CommonBond Disclosures

Offered terms are subject to change and state law restriction. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900), NMLS Consumer Access. If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown.  If you choose to complete an application, we will conduct a hard credit pull, which may affect your credit score. All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 0.15% effective Jan 1, 2021 and may increase after consummation.

4 Important Disclosures for EdvestinU.

EdvestinU Disclosures

EDvestinU is a product of the nonprofit New Hampshire Higher Education Loan Corporation (dba The NHHEAF Network) NMLS ID#1527348.

APR range and repayment rates displayed assume a $10,000 loan disbursed in two equal disbursements. APR low assumes immediate repayment and 7 year repayment. APR high assumes deferred repayment and 15 year repayment. APR’s presented include a .50% interest rate reduction for electing to have payments automatically deducted from a bank account. The interest rate reduction for authorizing our servicer to automatically deduct monthly payments from a savings or checking account will not reduce the monthly payment, but will reduce the monthly finance charge, resulting in a lower total cost of loan. All examples are provided for educational purposes and actual terms may vary based on credit history, loan amount, applicable repayment term, and chosen repayment plan and method. Please note that the interest rate on variable rate programs may increase or decrease over time. The variable rate example assumes the same standard rate for the life of the loan. The NHHEAF Network reserves the right to modify or cancel its program at any time.  

Eligibility: Dependent and independent U.S. citizen students. Currently residents of Washington and California are not eligible for EDvestinU programs.
Students must be enrolled at least half-time at a U.S.-based Title IV, degree-granting college or university.
The borrower or cosigner (if applicable) must have a minimum adjusted gross income of $30,000.

Loan Limits: Minimum loan amount of $1,000.
Maximum loan amount is cost of education less aid received.

Repayment: Standard or graduated repayment options available during repayment; 7, 10, or 15 year term selected by the borrower.
6-month grace period available to borrowers electing a full in-school deferment. 
No prepayment penalty.
Payments may be postponed during repayment by qualifying for an economic hardship deferment.

Cosigner Release: Cosigner release allowed if an account is in current standing, after 36 months of consecutive & on-time payments with a borrower FICO >749 for EDvestinU Private Student Loans and minimum income requirement of $30,000 with no foreclosures, repossessions, wage garnishments, unpaid tax liens, unpaid judgments or other public records having an open balance exceeding $100 during the last 7 years. The borrower must not currently be involved in bankruptcy proceeding or had any bankruptcy filings during the past 10 years and cannot have any defaults on education loans.

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Earnest Disclosures

  1. Rates include 0.25% Auto Pay Discount
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    Rates shown include 0.25% APR discount when client agrees to make monthly principal and interest payments by automatic electronic payment. Use of autopay is not required to receive an Earnest loan.

    Available Terms
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    Primary Only – 10, 12, 15 years

    In school deferred payment is not available in AL, AZ, CA, FL, MA, MD, MI, ND, NY, PA, and WA).

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Ascent loans are funded by Bank of Lake Mills, Member FDIC. Loan products may not be available in certain jurisdictions. Certain restrictions, limitations; and terms and conditions may apply. For Ascent Terms and Conditions please visit: >;.

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FundingU Disclosures

Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are made by Funding University which is a for-profit enterprise. Funding University is not affiliated with the school you are attending or any other learning institution. None of the information contained in Funding University’s website constitutes a recommendation, solicitation or offer by Funding University or its affiliates to buy or sell any securities or other financial instruments or other assets or provide any investment advice or service.

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UNDERGRADUATE LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.13% to 10.66% annual percentage rate (“APR”) (with autopay), variable rates from 1.12% to 11.23% APR (with autopay). GRADUATE LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.13% to 10.90% APR (with autopay), variable rates from 1.10% to 11.34% APR (with autopay). MBA AND LAW SCHOOL LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.08% to 10.86% APR (with autopay), variable rates from 1.05% to 11.29% APR (with autopay). PARENT LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.23% to 10.66% APR (with autopay), variable rates from 1.20% to 11.23% APR (with autopay). For variable rate loans, the variable interest rate is derived from the one-month LIBOR rate plus a margin and your APR may increase after origination if the LIBOR increases. Changes in the one-month LIBOR rate may cause your monthly payment to increase or decrease. Interest rates for variable rate loans are capped at 13.95%, unless required to be lower to comply with applicable law. Lowest rates are reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. If approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your creditworthiness, the repayment option you select, the term and amount of the loan and other factors, and will be within the ranges of rates listed above. The SoFi 0.25% autopay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account. Information current as of 4/1/2021. Enrolling in autopay is not required to receive a loan from SoFi. SoFi Lending Corp., licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. NMLS #1121636 (>

9 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.

Citizens Bank Disclosures

Undergraduate Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 1.15% – 11.01% (1.15% – 10.24 APR)Fixed interest rates range from 4.18% – 11.70% (4.18% – 10.83% APR).

Graduate Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 1.89% – 10.66% (1.89% – 10.41% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 4.64% – 11.23%% (4.64% – 10.95% APR).

Business/Law Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 1.89% – 9.22% (1.89% – 8.50% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 4.38% – 10.44% (4.38% – 9.72% APR).

Medical/Dental Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 1.89% – 8.02% (1.89% – 7.72% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 4.28% – 9.24% (4.28% – 8.94% APR).

Parent Loan Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 1.97% – 7.06% (1.97% – 7.06% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 4.94% – 8.58% (4.94% – 8.58% APR).

Bar Study Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 4.44% – 9.58% (4.44% – 9.52% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 7.39% – 12.94% (7.40% – 12.83% APR).

Medical Residency Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates range from 3.53% – 7.03% (3.53% – 6.76% APR). Fixed interest rates range from 6.99% – 10.49% (6.98% – 10.09% APR).

Variable Rate Disclosure: Variable Rates are based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of June 1, 2021, the one-month LIBOR rate is 0.09%. Variable interest rates will fluctuate over the term of the loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. The maximum variable rate is the greater of 21.00% or Prime Rate plus 9.00%. 

Fixed Rate Disclosure: Fixed rate ranges are based on applicable terms, level of degree, and presence of a co-signer.

Lowest Rate Disclosure: Lowest rates require a 5-year repayment term, immediate repayment, a graduate degree (where applicable), and include our Loyalty and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty Discount and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. Rates are subject to additional terms and conditions, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.

Federal Loan vs. Private Loan Benefits: Some federal student loans include unique benefits that the borrower may not receive with a private student loan, some of which we do not offer.  Borrowers should carefully review federal benefits, especially if they work in public service, are in the military, are considering possible loan forgiveness options, are currently on or considering income based repayment options or are concerned about a steady source of future income and would want to lower their payments at some time in the future. When the borrower refinances, they waive any current and potential future benefits of their federal loans. For more information about federal student loan benefits and federal loan consolidation, visit We also have several resources available to help the borrower make a decision on our website including Should I Refinance My Student Loans? and our FAQs. Should I Refinance My Student Loans? includes a comparison of federal and private student loan benefits that we encourage the borrower to review.

Eligibility Criteria: Applicants must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or eligible non-citizen with a creditworthy U.S. citizen or permanent resident co-signer. For applicants who have not attained the age of majority in their state of residence, a co-signer is required. Citizens Bank reserves the right to modify eligibility criteria at any time. Citizens Bank private student loans are subject to credit qualification, completion of a loan application/Promissory Note, verification of application information, and if applicable, self-certification form, school certification of the loan amount, and student’s enrollment at a Citizens Bank participating school.

Loyalty Discount Disclosure: The borrower will be eligible for a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their loan if the borrower or their co-signer (if applicable) has a qualifying account in existence with us at the time the borrower and their co-signer (if applicable) have submitted a completed application authorizing us to review their credit request for the loan. The following are qualifying accounts: any checking account, savings account, money market account, certificate of deposit, automobile loan, home equity loan, home equity line of credit, mortgage, credit card account, or other student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. Please note, our checking and savings account options are only available in the following states: CT, DE, MA, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, and VT and some products may have an associated cost. This discount will be reflected in the interest rate disclosed in the Loan Approval Disclosure that will be provided to the borrower once the loan is approved. Limit of one Loyalty Discount per loan and discount will not be applied to prior loans. The Loyalty Discount will remain in effect for the life of the loan.

Automatic Payment Discount Disclosure: Borrowers will be eligible to receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. during such time as payments are required to be made and our loan servicer is authorized to automatically deduct payments each month from any bank account the borrower designates. Discount is not available when payments are not due, such as during forbearance. If our loan servicer is unable to successfully withdraw the automatic deductions from the designated account three or more times within any 12-month period, the borrower will no longer be eligible for this discount.