Student Rights and Student Records
In carrying out their assigned responsibilities, many offices at the University of Michigan collect and maintain information about students. Although these records belong to the University, both University policy and federal law accord you a number of rights concerning these records. The following is designed to inform you concerning where records about you may be kept and maintained, what kinds of information are in those records, the conditions under which you or anyone else may have access to information in those records, and what action to take if you believe that the information in your record is inaccurate or that your rights have been compromised.
Because the University does not maintain all student records in one location, this document contains general information related to student records. By direction of the Regents, however, each office that maintains student records is required to develop a written statement of its policies and procedures for handling those records; that statement is available for you to examine in the particular office. In addition, copies of the University's "Policies on Student Records" and the pertinent federal law, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), are posted on the bulletin board outside the Registrar's Office (first floor, L.S.A. Building) and are also available in all dean's offices.
Types of Records and Where They Are Located
If you are in any school or college except Rackham, your dean's office or counseling office has information concerning your academic progress: admissions application, test scores, letters of recommendation, copy of academic record, notes (if any) made by academic counselors, information about honors awarded and/or academic discipline imposed, and similar items. If you are a Rackham student, this information will generally be found in your departmental office; some will be duplicated in files kept at the Graduate Records Office at the Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies.
Only two offices have records on all students. The Registrar's Office maintains information pertaining to your enrollment (registration) and, except for students in Dentistry, Law, and Medicine, your official academic record. The Student Financial Operations Office maintains information about charges assessed and payments made to your account.
The other offices listed at the end of this document will usually have information about you only if you have had dealings with them or utilized their services.
Once you attend, you have the following rights concerning your student records:
- The right to inspect and review all material in your file(s) except:
- Professional mental health treatment records to the extent necessary, in the judgment of the attending physician or professional counselor, to avoid detrimental effects to the mental health of the student or of others. These records may, however, be reviewed by a physician or other appropriate professional of your choice.
- Financial information furnished by your parents in support of an application for financial aid.
- Confidential letters of recommendation that were placed in your file prior to January 1, 1975.
- Confidential letters of recommendation concerning admission, employment, or honorary recognition, for which you have waived access. (The University may not require you to sign a waiver in order to obtain services, but a person writing a recommendation may insist on a waiver as a condition for his or her writing it.)
- Personal notes made by a faculty member or counselor that are accessible only to that person and are not shared with others.
- Materials in any admissions files, until you have been admitted to, and have enrolled in the UM school or college for which the materials were submitted.
Most offices will require you to file a written request if you wish to review your records. Sometimes the response will be immediate, but in most instances you should expect to wait several days; in no case, however, may the response be delayed more than 45 days from the date of your request. Also, once you have submitted such a request, no non-exempt material may be removed from the file in question until the matter is resolved.
NOTE: Federal law requires that an institution make copies of materials available to a student only if the failure to do so effectively prevents the student from reviewing his or her file (for example, if you were at some distance from Ann Arbor and could not readily come to the campus). Most offices at the University, however, will provide copies if you need them. You will probably have to wait several days for the copies and you will be charged not more than fifteen cents per page plus any postage involved. In certain instances, you may be directed to obtain copies from the office responsible for maintaining a particular record. For example, most offices will not copy transcripts (whether from UM or another institution you have attended) that are in their files; rather, you will be advised to obtain them directly from the Registrar's Office here or at your former school.
- The right to a hearing if you feel that (a) you have been improperly denied access to your records, (b) your records contain information that is inaccurate or misleading, or (c) information from your records has been improperly released to third parties. Each record-keeping office has a procedure for this purpose. The use of that procedure will result in one of the following:
- If the head of the office involved agrees with your contention, he or she will see to it that the necessary corrective action is taken.
- If the head of the office does not agree with your contention, you may request a hearing by a hearing panel or hearing officer designated by the unit's procedures.
- If the decision of the hearing panel or hearing officer agrees with you, the necessary corrective action will be taken.
- If the decision disagrees with you, you have the right to submit an explanatory statement, which must be included as a permanent part of your record.
- The right in most instances to control access to information in your records by persons or agencies outside the University. Within the University, information from your records will be made available to those staff members who demonstrate a legitimate educational interest consistent with their official functions for the University and consistent with normal professional and legal practices.
- Except for public information (see d below), however, persons outside the University - including your parents and/or spouse - will be given information from your records only (1) when you authorize it in writing, or (2) in connection with your application for or receipt of financial aid, or (3) in connection with studies conducted for the purpose of accreditation, development and validation of predictive tests, administration of student aid programs, or improvement of instruction, or (4) when disclosure is required in a health or safety emergency or by federal or state law or by subpoena. If information from your record is subpoenaed, you will be notified as quickly as possible. In addition, the results of a disciplinary hearing conducted by the institution against the alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence will be made available to the alleged victim of that crime
- Each office is required to keep a record of all requests for nonpublic information from your records made by persons outside the University, and to make that record available for you to examine.
- Federal law requires that the University designate what it regards as public information (directory information) and which may, therefore, be released to those outside the University without specific authorization. The law also requires that each currently enrolled student be given the opportunity to direct that any or all of the items designated as public information not be released without his or her consent.
- The University of Michigan has designated the following items as public information: (1) name, (2) permanent and local address and telephone, (3) UM school or college, (4) class level, (5) major field, (6) dates of attendance at the University of Michigan, (7) degree received and date awarded, (8) honors and awards received, (9) participation in recognized activities, (10) previous school(s) attended, and (11) height and weight of members of intercollegiate athletic teams.
- You have the right to direct that public information about you not be released, however, you should carefully consider the consequences of that action before making the decision to do so. Information is not withheld selectively. If you choose to have public information withheld, it is withheld from everybody who inquires.
- If you wish the University not to release any or all of those items designated as public information, you must file a written request to that effect with the Registrar's Office during each term you are enrolled.
- The right to file a complaint to federal officials if you feel that there has been a violation of the rights afforded you under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974. The complaint must be submitted in writing within 180 days of the alleged violation to:
U. S. Department of Education
The Family Policy Compliance Office
600 Independent Avenue SW
Washington, D. C. 20202-4605
Telephone (202) 260-3887
Questions about the policies and procedures of any unit should be directed to the head of that unit. Questions about the University's"Policies on Student Records" or about the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 should be directed to:
The Office of the Registrar
1524 L.S.A. Building
500 S. State St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1382
Telephone (734) 764-6280
School, college, and major administrative offices that maintain student records and title and address of person responsible
Academic Outreach - Extension Service
Director, 837 Greene Street, Buhr Bldg., 3297
Admissions, Office of Undergraduate
Director, 1220 S.A.B., 1316
Affirmative Action Office
Director, 4005 Wolverine Tower, 3003 S. State Street, 1281
Architecture and Urban Planning, College of
School Registrar, 2150 Art & Arch. Bldg., 2069
Art and Design, School of
Associate Dean, 2055 Art & Arch. Bldg., 2069
Business Administration, School of
B.B.A., M.B.A., M.Acc. records: Director of Admissions and Student Services, B2260 Bus. Ad., 1234
Ph.D. records: Director of Doctoral Studies Program,B2254 Bus. Ad., 1234
Career Planning and Placement, Reference Letter Center
Senior Associate Director, 3200 S.A.B., 1316
Comprehensive Studies Program
Director, 1159 Angell Hall, 1003
Counseling Services, Office of Student Services
Director, 3100 Michigan Union, 1349
Dean of Students, Office of the
3000 Michigan Union, 1349
Dentistry, School of
School Registrar, G226 School of Dentistry, 1078
Education, School of
Assistant Dean, Student Affairs, 1110 School of Education Bldg., 1259
Education of Women, Center for the
Associate Director, 330 E. Liberty Street, 2289
Engineering, College of
Associate Dean, Undergraduate Education, 1261 B. Lurie Engineering Center, 2102
English Language Institute
Director, University of Michigan, TCF Building, 401 E. Liberty, Suite 350, 2298
Ethics and Religion, Office of
Program Coordinator, 6015 Fleming, 1340
Financial Aid, Office of
Associate Director, 2011 S.A.B., 1316
Graduate Studies, Horace H. Rackham School of
Director of Graduate Academic Records, 1014A Rackham, 1070
Medical Record Manager, 207 Fletcher, 1050
Assistant to the Director, 1210 Angell Hall, 1003
Housing Information Office, 1011 S.A.B., 1316
Information, School of
Director of Student & Faculty Services, 306 West Hall, 1092
Institutional Equity, Office for
Director, 2072 Administrative Services, 1432
Student/Academic Advisor, 1000 S. State Street, 2201
Director, 603 E. Madison Street, 1370
Kinesiology, Division of
Director of Academic Services, 3060 C.C.R.B., 2214
Assistant Dean, Student Affairs, 301 Hutchins Hall, 1215
Literature, Science, and the Arts, College of
Assistant Dean, Student Academic Affairs, 1228 Angell Hall, 1003
Lloyd Hall Scholars Program
Director, Alice Lloyd Hall, 100 S. Observatory, 2025
Registrar, C5124 Med. Sci. I, 0611
Military Officer Education Programs
Air Force, Administrative Officer, 150 North Hall, 1085
Army, Secretary, 131 North Hall, 1085
Navy, Executive Officer, 103 North Hall, 1085
Music, School of
Graduate, Associate Dean, 2277 Moore Bldg., 2085
Undergraduate, Associate Dean, 2277 Moore Bldg., 2085
Natural Resources and Environment, School of
Director of Academic Programs, 1520 Dana Bldg., 1115
New Student Programs, Office of
Director, 3511 S.A.B., 1316
Nursing, School of
Executive Associate Dean, Academic Affairs, 1160 Nursing Bldg., 0482
Pharmacy, College of
Graduate, Office Supervisor, 1028 College of Pharmacy, 1065
Undergraduate, College Recorder, 1028 College of Pharmacy, 1065
Public Health, School of
School Recorder, Office of Academic Affairs, 3537 S.P.H. I, 2029
Public Policy, Gerald R. Ford School of
Director, Office of Admissions, Academic Services, and Programs 440 Lorch Hall, 1220
Public Safety and Security, Department of
Director, 1239 Kipke Drive, 1010
Registrar, Office of the
University Registrar, 1524 L.S.A. Bldg., 1382
Associate Director, Academic Services, 134 Tyler House, East Quadrangle, 1245
Social Work, School of
Asst. Dean, Student & Multicultural Affairs, 1748 S.S.W.B., 1106
Student Conflict Resolution, Office of
Director, G-121 South Quad, 1372
Student Financial Operations, Office of
Supervisor, 2226 S.A.B., 1316
University Library Administration, 818 Hatcher Library South, 1205
Vice President for Student Affairs, Office of
6015 Fleming Bldg. 1340