Guidelines for Faculty and Staff

  • DO refer requests for information from the educational record of a student to the proper education record custodian. When in doubt about the proper custodian, contact the University Registrar or the University Privacy Officer.
  • DO keep only those individual student records necessary for the fulfillment of your teaching and advising responsibilities. Private notes of a faculty member concerning a student and intended for the faculty member’s own use are not part of the student’s educational records.
  • DO keep any personal professional records relating to individual students separate from their educational records. Private records of instructional, supervisory, and administrative personnel and ancillary educational personnel are to be kept in the sole possession of the maker and are not to be accessible or revealed to any other person, except a substitute.
  • DO change factual information regarding grades and performance in an educational record when the student is able to provide valid documentation that information is inaccurate or misleading. The substantive judgement of a faculty member about a student’s work, expressed in grades and/or evaluations, is not within the purview of students’ right to challenge their educational records.
  • DO NOT display student scores or grades publicly in association with names, Social Security Numbers, or other personal identifiers. If scores or grades are posted, use some code known only to you and the individual student. Even a partial Social Security Number should not be used. In no case should the list be posted in alphabetic sequence by student name.
  • DO NOT put papers, graded exams books, or lab reports containing student names and grades in publicly accessible places. Students are not to have access to the scores and grades of others in class in ways that allow other students to be identified.
  • DO NOT request information from the educational record custodian without a legitimate educational interest and the appropriate authority to do so.
  • DO NOT share student educational record information, including grades or grade point averages, with other faculty or staff members of the University unless their official responsibilities identify their “legitimate educational interest” in that information for that student.
  • DO NOT share information from student educational records, including grades or grade point averages, with parents or others outside the institution, including in letters of recommendation, without written permission from the student.
  • WHEN IN DOUBT, err on the side of caution and do not release student educational information. Contact the University Registrar or the University Privacy Officer for guidance.

Distance Learning Privacy Considerations

If you are an instructor teaching a distance learning course this semester, you may find yourself implementing certain practices and proctoring tools to authenticate a student’s identity and/or to promote academic integrity. For example, you may decide to use a remote monitoring tool to proctor your exams or ask that a student participate using their computer’s camera. If you require student monitoring of any kind for your course, or intend to record lectures with students present, please inform your students in writing as early as possible in the semester (e.g. notice on your syllabus or email to the class). This will allow students an opportunity to anticipate and resolve any potential privacy concerns they may have in taking the course. By providing transparency of monitoring practices, students are clearly notified of course expectations and generally required to comply with limited exceptions. Flexibility for students is encouraged wherever possible.