Office of the Provost

Information Security and FERPA

Posting Confidential Student Information

Effective Fall 2008

FERPA prohibits the disclosure of any confidential student information--including name, student identification number, Social Security Number or a portion thereof--in a personally identifiable manner, without the student's written consent.

It is a violation of the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA or the “Buckley Amendment”) to publicly post on the Web (or by any other medium) final course grades using the last four digits of a student's social security number. Accordingly, effective immediately, all academic work grades, including

  • final course grades
  • exams
  • quizzes
  • homework

...or any other confidential student information may not be publicly disclosed or posted, on the Web or by any other medium, using any part or combination of a student's social security number without the written consent of each student. Please note that since final course grades may be inferred from the collection of raw scores on exams, quizzes, etc., all academic work is included to avoid any confusion or dispute as to what constitutes a confidential student record.

In summary, the university extends the FERPA regulations to prohibit the disclosure of any confidential information in a personally identifiable manner. As such, university employees shall not disclose such information through a posted list, a distributed list, a web page, or an unencrypted electronic message to anyone without an educational reason to have such information. Email messages containing such sensitive information must be properly addressed to a legitimate recipient of that information, and the messages must be digitally encrypted to prevent unauthorized access to the information.

Faculty may continue to use student specific password-protected systems (such as eLearning or Web for Faculty) to communicate academic work grades or other confidential information to individual students. Students may also access their final course grades using eLearning or Galaxy.

Other Relevant Sites