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University Registrar

Student Records Policy

View our Student Records Policy FAQ.

 

Western Oregon University is committed to the privacy and security of our students.  The Student Records Policy outlines the policies established by the university to maintain the confidentiality of students' education records.  Western Oregon University Student Records Policy complies with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) - sometimes called the Buckley Amendment - which provides guidelines for maintaining the confidentiality of education records and monitoring the release of information from those records.

 

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

FERPA is a federal regulation enacted in 1974 that has since had many amendments.  Responsibility for oversight of FERPA compliance rests with the Department of Education’s Family Policy Compliance Office.  For complete information on FERPA, see their web site at

http://www.ed.gov/offices/OII/fpco/index.html.

 

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Annual Notification of Student Rights
Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

 

WOU is required to annually notify students of the rights afforded to them under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). WOU is providing this notification to you to comply with the notification requirements under this Act.


FERPA affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. They are:


Summary of Student Rights under FERPA

  1. Inspect and review the student’s educational records;
  2. Request the amendment of the student’s education records to ensure that they are not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy or other rights;
  3. Consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s educational records, except to the extent that FERPA and the regulations under it authorize disclosure without consent;
  4. File with the U.S. Department of Education a complaint under 34 CFR Sec. 99.63 concerning alleged failures by the institution to comply with the requirements of FERPA; and
  5. Obtain a copy of WOU’s Student Records Policy from the Office of the Registrar, Western Oregon University, 345 N. Monmouth Ave, Monmouth, OR 97361, 503-838-8327.

More Detailed Explanation of Rights under FERPA


(1) The right to inspect and review the student’s education records.


Students should submit to the Registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The university official 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 university official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

 

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(2) The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records to ensure that they are not inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy or other rights.


Students may ask the university to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the university official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading.

If the university decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the university will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of 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.

 

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(3) Consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s educational records, except to the extent that FERPA and the regulations under it authorize disclosure without consent.

 

One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate education interests. A school official includes a person employed by the university in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel, persons serving on the Crisis Assessment, Response and Education team, and health staff); a person, company, or entity with whom the university has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Education; 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 responsibilities. Upon request, the university discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll. No further notice need be given to students of transfer of records to such other school.

 

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(4) The right to file with the U.S. Department of Education a complaint under 34 CFR Sec. 99.63 concerning alleged failures by the institution 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
400 Maryland Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20202

 

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(5) Obtain a copy of the WOU Student Records Policy


WOU policies elaborate upon or qualify rights in student records to the extent the institution is authorized to do so under law. Copies of the WOU policies may be obtained from the university Registrar’s Office.


In accordance with state and federal law, the university has adopted a policy to govern the gathering, use and disclosure of student records. Under the WOU Student Records Policy, most of the records that the university maintains with regard to a student can be disclosed without a student’s written consent only to the student, to school officials, to sponsors of financial aid (when the student has applied for or received aid), to some government agencies, and to persons issuing lawful subpoenas.

 

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Definition of education records

Education records are those records directly related to a student maintained by the university or by a party acting for the university.

 

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Release of education records

Except as provided in FERPA or other applicable law, the University will not disclose personally identifiable information from a student's education records unless the student provides a written release containing:

  1. What information is to be released
  2. To whom the information is to be released
  3. The purpose for which it is to be released
  4. The student’s signature and the date signed

The University discloses education records without a student's prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel, persons serving on the Critical Incident Response team, and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using University employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Education; 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 responsibilities for the University.

 

Some records created and maintained by the University, although not covered by FERPA, may be subject to other federal and state statutory disclosure requirements.

 

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Definition of directory information

FERPA authorizes the University to make public disclosure at its discretion, upon request, of directory information including: student's full name; student's photograph; dates of enrollment; local, permanent and electronic addresses and telephone numbers; place of birth; participation in officially recognized activities and sports; weight and height of members of athletic teams; class level; program of study; numbers of credit hours earned (not grades); degrees and awards received; the most recent educational institution attended; job titles and dates of employment for student employees who have been or are paid from university administered funds.

 

The table below indicates directory information that may be released if students have not requested confidentiality. It also indicates student information that may not be released even for students that have not requested confidentiality.

 

Information requested  YES  NO 
Student's full name X  
Student's photograph X  
WOU ID number or Social Security number   X
Personal identification number (PIN)   X
Date of birth   X
Gender   X
Place of birth X  
Local address and telephone number X  
Permanent address and telephone number X  
Billing address X  
E-Mail address X  
Parent names or parent addresses   X
Class level and academic major/minor X  
Dates of enrollment X  
Degrees, honors, certificates, and date awarded X  
Class rank   X
GPA or grades   X
Transcripts (official or unofficial)   X
Academic standing or eligibility to return to school   X
Earned credit hours X  
Class schedule (CRN's, meeting times, locations)   X
Enrollment status (full-time, half-time, less than half-time) X  
Whether a student has applied for graduation   X
Unmet degree requirements for graduation   X
Accounts receivable balance   X
Financial records of parents   X
Participation in official recognized activities and sports X  
Height & weight of athletic team members X  
Job title and dates of WOU student employment X  
Most recent educational institution attended X  
Copies of transcripts from other schools   X
Copies of test scores (CLEP, TOEFL, AP, IB)   X
Residency status   X
VA or Social Security status   X
Counseling or medical records   X

 

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Directory information restriction

Students may choose to restrict release of their directory information.  When the release of directory information is restricted, the fact that an individual is currently a student, has ever been enrolled, or has earned a degree at Western Oregon University, will not be released (to anyone, including prospective employers).

 

Once a student restricts the release of directory information, in order to conduct any business with the university, the student must go in person to the office involved, with photo ID, or, via mail or fax, provide a written request for release containing the following:

  1. What information is to be released
  2. To whom the information is to be released
  3. The purpose for which it is to be released
  4. The student's signature and the date signed

Once a student restricts the release of directory information, no information will be provided to anyone - parents, relatives, friends, other students, or prospective employers - who may wish to contact the student or verify student status at the university, without a written release from the student containing the elements listed above.

 

Restricted Directory Information is made available only where an emergency is involved, at the direction of a court order, or to Western Oregon University staff and faculty with a legitimate educational need to know.

 

A Prevent Disclosure form is available in the Office of the Registrar, Administration Building Room 106, 345 North Monmouth Ave, Monmouth, OR 97361 and from our website. Complete the form, including signature and date, and return it in person. Photo identification is required (and will be required for all future information requests).

 

A request to place or remove the restriction is effective no later than two working days after it is received in the Office of the Registrar.

 

NOTE: Submission of a Records Confidentiality Request form does not affect directory information already published or released.

Duration of the restriction

The restriction of information is permanent until the student requests, in writing, that it be removed. The restriction will remain in place even after the student has stopped attending or has graduated from the university.

 

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Posting of grades

Faculty and staff are responsible for protecting the identity of students and keeping student grades confidential. Grades or evaluations linked to personal identifiers (names, WOU ID numbers, or Social Security numbers) may not be publicly disclosed. Grades or evaluations may be posted only by using randomly generated codes or numbers. The return of graded papers or other assignments must also be accomplished in a manner that protects the identity of the student.

 

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Requesting letters of reference or recommendation from faculty or staff

Students who request letters of reference or recommendation from Western Oregon University faculty or staff members need to do so in writing. Such letters or statements are most effective if they contain specific information about the student’s academic or work performance; this type of information is considered “non-directory” information and cannot be released without the signed written consent of the student, according to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and Western Oregon University Student Records Policy.

 

A student request authorizing release of non-directory information should contain the following:

  • What information is to be released (be as specific as possible)
  • To whom the information is to be released (name, address)
  • The purpose of the release of the information (application for a specific job or admission to a graduate program, for example)
  • Student signature and date signed

The Office of the Registrar has composed a FERPA-compliant authorization to release form that must be used when requesting references/recommendations. Login to the WOU Portal and click "Referral And Recommendation Request."

 

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Student identification number

The WOU ID number is an eight-digit number prefaced by a V, randomly generated and assigned at the time of first admission.  The WOU ID number is imprinted on the student's ID card.  WOU ID numbers will not be released except to the student who comes in person to the Office of the Registrar with photo identification, or in response to a written request for release from the student containing the four elements listed previously under Release of education records.

 

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Oregon University System (OUS)
Social Security number disclosure consent statement

Students are requested to provide voluntarily their Social Security numbers to assist OUS (and organizations conducting studies on behalf of OUS) in developing, validating, or administering predictive tests and assessments; administering student aid programs; improving instruction; internal identification of students; collection of student debts; or comparing student educational experiences with subsequent workforce experiences. When conducting studies, OUS will disclose a Social Security number only in a manner that does not permit personal identification of a student by individuals other than representatives of OUS (or the organization conducting the study for OUS) and only if the information is destroyed when no longer needed for the purposes for which the study was conducted. By providing their Social Security number, students are consenting to the uses identified above. This request is made pursuant to ORS 351.070 and 351.085. Provision of the student’s Social Security number and consent to its use is not required and, if a student chooses not to do so, he/she will not be denied any right, benefit, or privilege provided by law. A student may revoke consent for the use of his/her Social Security number at any time by contacting the Office of the Registrar.

 

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Contact

University Registrar ph: (503) 838-8327; fax: (503) 838-9696 | or e-mail: registrar@wou.edu

MissionWestern Oregon University | 345 N. Monmouth Ave. | Monmouth OR 97361 | 503-838-8000(V/TTY) | Admissions 1-877-877-1593 | webmaster@wou.edu Text only
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