FERPA and Student Records Access
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (FERPA), Appalachian State University is restricted in releasing student information without the consent of the student. It provides the student a right to inspect his/her records and restrict the disclosure of those records. Further information about FERPA is available on the U.S. Department of Education FERPA website.
What is an education record?
In the broadest sense, education records are any records maintained by the institution from which a student can be personally identified. As a result, almost all of the information that Appalachian State University maintains on students is considered a part of the education record, regardless of the format in which the information is kept. This means that education records include, but are not limited to grades, transcripts, schedules, personal information, course management (AsULearn) information, advising information, financial aid information, student information in reports and student photos. (Exceptions are listed in the "University Policy Statement" indicated above.)
In addition to the student, who has access to the education record?
Within the University, an employee or other person ("University official") who has a "legitimate educational interest" in the record.
What is "legitimate educational interest"?
A University official has a "legitimate educational interest" if the official is:
- performing a task that is specified in his or her position description or by a contract agreement
- performing a task related to a student's education
- performing a task related to the discipline of a student
- providing a service or benefit relating to the student or student's family, such as advising, job placement, financial aid or housing assistance
- maintaining the safety and security of the campus
What is Directory Information?
Under FERPA, Appalachian State University designates the following student information as public or "Directory Information," which may be disclosed by the institution for any purpose, without the student's written consent.
- Student Name
- Local Telephone Listing
- University Post Office Box Number
- University E-Mail Address
- Academic Classification (i.e., senior, junior, sophomore, freshman)
- Enrollment Status (i.e., part-time or full-time)
- Field(s) of Study
- Dates of Attendance
- Degrees, Honors and Awards Received
- Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
- Weight, height, athletic statistics and photographic representations of members of athletic teams
Disclosure of other information (e.g., student identification number, grade point average, etc.) requires a signed consent from the student. Students may choose to restrict disclosure of directory information by contacting the Registrar's Office.
Students can access their grades by logging into their AppalNET account.
It should be understood that, at the post-secondary level, parents do not have automatic access to the student's education records. Access may be provided, under the following circumstances:
- The student can provide access in AppalNET using the Parent Portal consent process.
- In the absence of student consent, the parents (or legal guardians) must provide a copy of their Federal Income Tax form filed for the most recent tax year, indicating that the student was claimed as a dependent. The tax form should be directed to the Registrar's Office, and must be accompanied by a signed letter that clearly identifies the student and specifies the information needed from the education record. (Note: the student will be notified that a request for confidential information has been received, and that the University will comply with the request.)
- Individual employees may decline to provide requested information if they determine that disclosure would be detrimental to the student-institution relationship or impede efficient and effective University operations.
For questions or problems related to access, please contact the Registrar's Office at (828) 262-2050.
Enrollment Verification -- Self Service
In cooperation with the National Student Clearinghouse, Appalachian State University provides a free self-service program that allows students to verify and view enrollment information. From the Clearinghouse site, students may access the following services:
- Obtain an enrollment certificate to print and mail to healthcare providers, insurance companies or other agencies that request proof of enrollment status.
- View the enrollment information on file with the Clearinghouse.
- View the student loan deferment notifications that the Clearinghouse has provided to loan lenders and guarantors.
- View the proof(s) of enrollment that the Clearinghouse has provided to health insurers and other providers of student services or products.
- View specific information about student loans.
Students may access their Enrollment Verification form from the National Student Clearinghouse by using Banner Self-Service's Student tab and selecting the National Student Clearinghouse link. Or, students may access the Enrollment Verification form through AppalNET, using the Self Service tab, selecting the Student tab and then the National Student Clearinghouse link .
Alternatively, an enrollment verification form can be requested by calling the Registrar's Office at (828) 262-6818.
If you have questions or concerns about FERPA regulations, please contact the University Registrar at 828-262-2050 or by e-mail at email@example.com or the Office of the University Attorney at 828-262-2751.