What is FERPA?

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords you, the student, certain rights with respect to your education record.

What are my rights under FERPA?

As a college student you have the following rights:

  1. The right to inspect and review your education records (does not include parents' financial information) within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access.  Students should submit to the Registrar written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect.  The Registrar will arrange for access to notify the student of the time and place where records may be inspected.  If the Registrar does not maintain the records, the Registrar will advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

  2. The right to request amendment of education records that you believe are inaccurate or misleading.  Students should ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading.  They should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading.  If the University decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment.  Additional information regarding hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

  3. The right to have some control over the disclosure of personally identifiable information from your education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.  One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests.  A school official is defined as a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, or support staff position (including campus security unit and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.  A school official has legitimate educational interests if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
  4. The right to file with the US Department of Education a complaint concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of FERPA.  The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:  Family Policy Compliance Office, US Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC  20202-5901

What is "Directory Information"?

Directory information can be given out to third parties without the student's written consent. 

The University of Dubuque defines directory information as:

  • Personal data which includes: Student's name and UD assigned e-mail address.
  • Enrollment data which includes: Academic program (degree, major, minor, expected graduation date), Academic Level (classification or division), Current Enrollment Status (full, half, part-time, etc.), Attendance Dates, Degrees and Awards received.
  • Participation data which includes the student's participation in officially recognized activities and sports, including an athlete's weight and height.

Can I control the release of Directory Information?

You can restrict the release of Directory Information by completing the Non-Disclosure Form (available in the Registrar's Office).   

You should consider carefully the consequences of any decision made by you to withhold "Directory Information". If such a request is made, the University will not release your name in any press releases.  Student activities, campus organizations, and friends will not be able to obtain directory information on you.  In addition, without your specific written approval, University officials will not be able to confirm your enrollment or graduation, nor include your name in the Commencement Program. If you request non-disclosure and you want your name to appear in the program, please inform the Registrar in writing that the Commencement program is an exception.

Once filed, this request becomes a permanent part of your record until you instruct the University of Dubuque, in writing, to have the request removed.

Do my parents or other family members have access to my education records?

A parent or guardian does not have access to your education records without your written consent.

A spouse or other person would also have to have your written consent to access your education records. The FERPA Waiver Form is available in the Registrar's Office.

Who do I contact if I have questions about FERPA?

Questions about FERPA may be directed to the Office of the Registrar via mail at University of Dubuque, Office of the Registrar, 2000 University Avenue, Dubuque, IA 52001-5099, telephone at 563.589.3748, or in person in Charles and Romona Myers Center, Room 325.