What is an Educational Record?
According to AACRAO the definition of an educational record includes the following: "All records which contain information directly related to a student; and are maintained by an educational agency or by a party acting for the agency or institution. This term has a very broad scope. Any information which makes a student personally identifiable, such as an ID number or home address, is considered an educational record."1
The following records fall outside of the definition of an educational record and therefore do not have to be released to a student should the student request this information:2
- Sole possession records: Records which are created and maintained by the person generating education records (not in conjunction with the student). These are essentially personal notes or "memory joggers." If any person other than the possessor has access to the record, the record then becomes an educational record under FERPA.
- Records containing information about an individual which is created after he/she is no longer a student at that institution (i.e., alumni records).
Student Right to Inspect Educational Records
Under FERPA students must be permitted to inspect their own educational records. In addition, institutions may not disclose information about a student's record nor permit inspection of a student's record by a third party without written permission from that student. The student's parents can have access to their student's education record without the student's signature if the parent submits proof that their student is a dependent, unless the school chooses to consider all enrolled college students as independent adults (Biola's position).
Request to Inspect Educational Records
Download this form to request an appointment to view and inspect your educational records.
- American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO) [website]