For years, many consumer advocates and education finance experts have criticized the way some colleges tell admitted applicants about the financial aid they will receive if they enroll.

Studies have found inconsistencies in how colleges describe the same forms of aid and have criticized suggesting that loans are the same as grants. Others have criticized colleges for not distinguishing among various forms of loans. Given that many students and their families may not understand the significance of borrowing through a federal versus private loan program, for example, critics say that less-than-clear aid letters make it difficult for students and families to make informed decisions.

With students who have multiple admission offers for the fall deciding where to enroll, the U.S. Education Department’s Office of Federal Student

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