What is a student record under FERPA?

FERPA defines "student record" to include all records maintained by the institution that directly relate to a current or former student. FERPA's broad definition of  "student record" includes written, electronic, video, audio and photos. There are a few exceptions, which include:

  • An administrator or faculty member's own notes that are used only by that individual and are not shared with anyone else;
  • Records that relate to the student as an employee;
  • Medical, psychiatric or psychological records not shared with the institution;
  • Records containing only information about a student after graduation, such as development or alumni records;
  • Records maintained by the institution's law enforcement unit that were created by that unit for the purpose of law enforcement.