Sallie Mae student loans are a great way to pay for college. Sallie Mae can help you obtain federal loans along with alternative financing for students who cannot otherwise qualify. The federal loans typically have the best interest rates and payback policies. Federal loans include the Federal Stafford Loan and the Federal Perkins Loan.The Perkins Loan is unique in that the school you attend will be the lender. Some schools will not participate in the Perkins Loan. Sallie Mae can act as the lender for a Stafford Loan, or they can act as the guarantor for the lender.You can also get a private Sallie Mae loan if you do not meet the Federal guidelines. These loans are typically called an alternative student loan as they are personal and generally not subsidized.Rather than going to a bank for a private loan, you should utilize Sallie Mae for a loan. The rates tend to be lower and payment terms better than you can obtain at a bank.A federal loan has certain income and grade point restrictions. A private loan generally will not have as many restrictions and will allow you to borrow more money. The primary concern here will be with your credit score.Many students find that they need more than one loan to pay for college, some of the loans have different interest rates, terms of payments, and payment dates. These students find that it may be advantageous to consolidate all of their loans into one Sallie Mae loan. This may, or may not, be the best thing for your situation. If you decide to consolidate your loan you may end up paying a higher interest rate, or change the terms of your loan, where the interest is now due, when previously you had an interest deferred loan. Once you consolidate your Sallie Mae student loan, you cannot go back and change it to the way it previously was.Also, you may no need to consolidate your loans in order to get lower interest rates and one monthly payment. Sallie Mae can combine the payments from the various loans, both federal and private, into one convenient monthly payment without having to consolidate your loan.Check with your lending institution, they can provide you with the information you need in order to make an informed decision. A Sallie Mae student loan consolidation may be the best solution for you.