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Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA)

Annual Notification

Students attending, or who have attended, the University of Virginia are given certain rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as amended (20 U.S.C. 1232g) and Rules of the Department of Education (34 C.F.R. Part 99) implementing this Act.

Student rights under the Act and Rules may be summarized as follows:

The University has adopted policy and procedures to protect the privacy rights of the past and present students. The policy and procedures describe:

Copies of the University's policy and procedures are available upon request at UREG (Office of the University Registrar) or on the web at:

The University may disclose personally identifiable information designated as directory information from a student's education records without a student's prior written consent, unless the student informs UREG (Office of the University Registrar) that they wish to restrict the release of their directory information.

Directory information consists of:

* It is the practice of the University to not release a student’s date of birth except as required by law or as a validation of positive identification of a student when furnished by a person making an inquiry. Further, it is the practice of the University not to release a student’s photo created through the ID card process.

Guidance on Recent FERPA Directory Information Change re Student Photos

There has been a recent change in what constitutes “directory information” under FERPA at UVA Specifically, photographic images of students are now considered part of directory information. This change was driven by an interest in enhancing compliance with FERPA given how often informal photographs of students are taken and used on websites and in other materials at the university. HOWEVER, despite this change, student images held in SIS may NOT be re-distributed. Students have the right to “opt out” of Directory information under FERPA regulations. Since SIS photos are created through the student ID card process and are not optional, use or redistribution of these images is not appropriate.

Refer to the University Registrar web site for full details on FERPA definitions of protected data at UVA, as well as use and disclosure guidelines.

University Registrar
October 2017

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