FERPA Overview

A federal law, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), affords students certain rights concerning their student education records. Students have the right to have some control over the disclosure of information from the records. Educational institutions have the responsibility to prevent improper disclosure of personally identifiable information from the records.

Students have a right to know about the purposes, content, and location of information kept as part of their educational records. They have a right to gain access to and challenge the content of their educational records. FERPA was not intended to provide a process to be used to question substantive judgments that are correctly recorded. The rights of challenge are not intended to allow students to contest, for example, a grade in a course because they felt a higher grade should have been assigned. Students also have a right to expect that information in their educational records will be kept confidential, disclosed only with their permission or under provisions of the law.

Student educational records are specifically defined as records, files, documents, and other materials that contain information directly related to a student and maintained by the University or someone acting for the University according to policy. Excluded from student educational records are records of instructional, supervisory, and administrative personnel and ancillary educational personnel in the sole possession of the maker and that are not accessible or revealed to any other person, except for a substitute. Additionally, notes of a professor or staff member intended for his or her own use are not part of the educational record, nor are records of police services, application records of students not admitted to the University, alumni records, or records of physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, or other recognized professionals. Records relating to an individual who is employed by the University not as a result of his or her status as a student are also excluded. However, employment records relating to University students who are employed as a result of their status as students are considered educational records.

FERPA Policy

The University’s FERPA Policy provides important information on the protection of student rights and privacy at UConn. The policy outlines student rights, when we may share information from education records, and the process for challenging the accuracy of education records.