Students

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WHAT IS FERPA?

FERPA is a federal law that protects the privacy of students. The law assigns the student as the owner of his/her educational record and provides guidelines on how the educational institution is to use and release protected information. This insures that information such as the student’s grades, academic standing, and course schedule are not public information and that the student controls who has access to this information. This law also requires the educator to grant the students access to their personal records.

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WHAT DOES THAT
MEAN AS A STUDENT?

This means UNL can only give out information that is listed as directory information; however, students may place a FERPA hold to restrict directory information. Access to grades, academic standing, and course schedule (to name a few) are considered protected and cannot be released without the student’s written consent.

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WHY SHOULD I CARE
ABOUT FERPA?

FERPA protects the student’s privacy by dictating what can be accessed by the public. It is important for students to know and understand their rights, how those rights affect their role as students, and how to grant access to desired individuals.

DIRECTORY INFORMATION
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What information is public?

The University is allowed to select some information about a student to make accessible to the public. This information is called "Directory Information." UNL has two levels of directory information. Public Directory Information is student information that is available to the public. This allows individuals such as employers or insurance agents to verify enrollment. Non-Public Directory Information is not available to the public, but is available to any University Official, student, or, at the University's discretion, University affiliates such as alumni associations. The directory information UNL has selected is the following:

Public Directory Information

  • Student name
  • Year at the University
  • Dates of attendance
  • Academic college and major field of study
  • Enrollment status (undergraduate or graduate; full-time or part-time)
  • Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
  • Degrees, honors and awards received
  • Most recent educational agency or institution attended

Non-Public Directory Information

  • Local address
  • Permanent address
  • Telephone listings
  • University email address

Directory information cannot include race, gender, SSN (or any part of SSN), grades, GPA, country of citizenship, ID number, or religion.

Public Directory information will be available to the public upon request and may be included in student directories published electronically.

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Can I hide my Directory information?

Yes, students are entitled to have public and non-public directory information withheld from the public. Non-disclosure of directory information must be requested via MyRED or in writing submitted to the Office of the University Registrar, 107 Canfield Administration Building by current or formerly enrolled students.

Please see the downsides to hiding your directory information before requesting non-disclosure.

What Non-Disclosure Does

Non-disclosure means the University may not release any directory information about the student, except as permitted under the provisions of FERPA. The University may not even acknowledge to third parties that the person is a student.

How long does Non-Disclosure last?

This directory information restriction remains in effect until you remove it through MyRED. Directory information already included in hard copy publications will be removed at the next printing of the hard copy publication.

Exceptions

Even though a student may have placed a FERPA restriction, the University has the right to share the student’s information, without the student’s authorization, with school officials who have a legitimate educational interest, in response to a judicial order or legally issued subpoena, and others.

Disclaimer

The University will honor a student's properly submitted request to restrict the release of directory information but cannot assume responsibility to contact the student for subsequent permission to release the information. Regardless of the effect upon a student, the University assumes no liability for honoring a student's request that directory information be restricted.

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Is there a downside to hiding my Directory Information?

  • Insurance companies and potential employers cannot verify your enrollment or awarded degree.
  • If you make the dean's list, your name will not be published.
  • Your name will not be included in the graduation program.
  • When graduating, your name will not be listed in the newspaper with the rest of the graduates.

The University will honor a student's properly submitted request to restrict the release of directory information but cannot assume responsibility to contact the student for subsequent permission to release the information. Regardless of the effect upon a student, the University assumes no liability for honoring a student's request that directory information be restricted.

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