All of the related expenses for obtaining a higher education can catch a family off guard if financial preparations were not made in advance. Some students apply themselves early and make grades throughout high school that makes them eligible for a full scholarship, often to the college or university of their choice.For students who do not have the benefit of a full scholarship, their parents will have to find alternative methods for paying for their college expenses over the next four years. Uncertified private student loans are one way that this is accomplished.Certified versus Uncertified Private Student LoansBefore applying for any type of college loan, it is best to have a clear understanding of the type of loan you or your child will receive. In general, private student loans are necessary when the standard financial aid such as Pell grants and Stafford loans are not enough to cover education related expenses. These expenses may include tuition, books, computers, and dorm fees.Both certified and uncertified loans can be used for these expenses. However, the primary difference between the two is that the certified loan requires that the institution where the student will attend verify the amount before funds are disbursed. The amount borrowed cannot exceed the total cost of attendance, minus other financial aid that the student receives.Uncertified private student loans do not require certification from the institution regarding the amount borrowed. Schools generally will not certify loans that are in excess of the total cost of attendance.Additionally, uncertified college loans are disbursed to the student or person borrowing the funds. As with any loan, it is best to borrow only the needed amount because all funds must be repaid after graduation.Although uncertified loans have fewer restrictions, a student may need a cosigner before the loan is approved. The borrower’s credit score and creditworthiness determines whether or not this type of loan is granted.Advantages of Uncertified Private Student LoansThere are a few advantages to getting an uncertified private student loan to help pay for college expenses. The procedures for applying are simplified. The terms of the loan is relaxed with competitive interest rates. The borrowing limits are higher for private student loans than they are for federally guaranteed student loans. As with federal loans, private loans may also be deferred while the student is enrolled in school.