The goal with student loan consolidation is simple: to roll all your different student loan payments into one lump payment. Ideally, this process will end with you having a lower interest rate and shorter term.
Technically speaking, the only student loans that can be “consolidated” are federal student loans. Everything else—so, private plus federal or private only—has to be refinanced.
Here’s the deal: Student loan consolidation is the only form of consolidation Dave Ramsey recommends—but on a case-by-case basis. It isn’t right for everyone.