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Office of the Registrar

Office of the Registrar

FERPA - Definitions


Attendance: An individual is considered “in attendance” at FGCU upon acceptance as a member of an incoming class or upon acceptance as a non-degree seeking student. Applicants for admissions to the University who are denied acceptance or, if accepted, choose not to attend are not considered to have been “in attendance”. The period of time during which a student is working under a work-study program is considered “in attendance."

Directory Information: Information contained in a student’s education record that would not be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed.

Disclosure: To permit access to or the release, transfer, or other communication of personally identifiable information contained in education records to any party, by any means, including but not limited to oral, written or electronic means.

Education Record: Any personally identifiable records maintained by the University or an agent or representative of the University that are directly related to a student and recorded in any medium, including but not limited to handwriting, electronic, print, computer media, video or audio tapes and disks, film, microfilm, and microfiche. Examples of education records include but not limited to grades, test scores, courses taken, disciplinary records, social security numbers and names of parents.

FERPA expressly excludes certain types of University records relating to a student from the definition of “education records”, and the University’s ability to disclose such records would fall within the parameters of Florida’s Public Records Law, Chapter 119, Florida Statutes, and other state and federal laws.

The following records are not considered education records:

  1. Personal Records of Notes – records of instructional, supervisory, administrative, and certain educational personnel that are in the sole possession of the maker thereof, and are not accessible or revealed to any other individual. An example of this type of record would be the “personal notes” of an employee kept for the employee’s own personal use in remembering certain matters and not shared with others.

  2. Law Enforcement Records – records maintained by the FGCU Police Department that were created by the department for a law enforcement purpose.

  3. Employment Records – records relating to individuals who are employed by FGCU and that are made and maintained in the normal course of business, related exclusively to individuals in their capacity as employees, and are not available for other purposes. In contrast, records related to individuals whose employment is contingent upon being a student, such as work-study employment records, are education records.

  4. Student Code of Conduct Records - the vast majority of records related to the FGCU student conduct process constitute education records. However, the final results may be communicated to a victim of violence committed by a student.

  5. Medical Records – records relating to a student that are: a. Created or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional, acting in his/her professional capacity or assisting in a paraprofessional capacity; b. Used solely in connection with the provision of treatment to the student; and c. Not disclosed to anyone other than individuals providing such treatment.

  6. Records created after the student is no longer in attendance at FGCU - records that contain information about an individual after he or she no longer is a student. Example of such records would be records created and maintained by Alumni Relations.

Student: An individual who is or has been in attendance at FGCU and about whom the University maintains education records.

Student Record: Any personally identifiable information or data relating to a student and collected, recorded, or maintained in any medium including but not limited to handwriting, electronic, print, computer media, video or audio tapes and disks, film, microfilm, and microfiche. Student records include education records and other types of records related to students.

Third Party: Any person other than the student. Examples of third parties are parents, legal guardians, spouses, employers, state/federal agencies etc.

University Officials: A University official includes a person employed by the University as a member of the faculty or staff, members of FGCU Board of Trustees, or a person under contract to the University to perform a task such as a consultant, attorney or auditor. Student or community members of University committees also are included in the definition of University officials as are student employees assisting a University official in performing his or her tasks. Inter-institutional disclosure may be made between FGCU and entities that administer or participate in joint programs or activities and that further a legitimate educational interest because such disclosures are considered made to “University officials”.