FERPA is the federal law that governs release of and access to student education records. Students have certain rights under FERPA, which include:
- The right to inspect and review their education records within 45 days of the day Pacific University receives a request for access. Students should submit to the Registrar’s Office written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The Registrar will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the Registrar’s Office, the student will be advised of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
- The right to request amendment of their education records that they believe are inaccurate. Students may ask Pacific University to amend a record they believe is inaccurate. They should submit to the Registrar’s Office a written request that identifies the part of the record they want changed, and specify why they believe it is inaccurate. If Pacific University decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the student will be notified of the decision and advised as to his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
- The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in their education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. FERPA does authorize disclosure without consent to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by Pacific University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom Pacific University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. As allowed within FERPA guidelines, Pacific University also may disclose education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Pacific University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is: Family Policy Compliance Office, U.S. Department of Education, 600 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC, 20202-4605.
FERPA allows Pacific University to provide Directory Information at its discretion. Directory Information is defined as that information which would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. Designated Directory Information at Pacific University includes the following: student name, permanent address, local address, temporary address, electronic mail address, telephone number, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, theses titles/topics, photograph, full-time/part-time status, most recent previous school attended, date and place of birth, and recorded image. Students may withhold Directory Information by notifying the Registrar’s Office in writing; withholding requests are binding for information to all parties other than those for which exceptions allowed under FERPA. Requests for non-disclosure are honored by the University for no more than one academic year. Re-authorization to withhold Directory Information must be filed annually in the Registrar’s Office within the first two weeks of the fall semester.
More information about FERPA and Pacific University’s compliance procedures is available in the Registrar’s Office.