NEWARK, Del. — The University of Delaware is participating in a federal pilot program that will test the effectiveness of extra student loan counseling.

Typically, students receive a counseling session before their freshman year and an exit session when they graduate.

The News Journal in Wilmington reports (http://delonline.us/2tX6JBH ) that starting this fall, half the students will be required to take extra counseling sessions while they’re in school any time they borrow more money. The other half will continue under the old system.

The university is one of about 50 schools nationwide selected to participate in the pilot program.

Since 2007, total student debt in the U.S. has nearly tripled.

The average amount of loans taken out by in-state students at the university exceeds $20,000.