FERPA Directory Information

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)(1974), also known as the Buckley Amendment, is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education/academic records.

Educational records must not be released, except to authorized individuals, without written consent from the student. The general exception is directory information. FERPA allows individual colleges/universities to specify what is considered directory information on their campuses. 

The University of Iowa has defined the following data elements as public information unless the student restricts access:

  • Name
  • Local Address 
  • Local Telephone number 
  • Permanent/Home Address
  • Hometown and state
  • E-mail address
  • University of Iowa Hawk ID
  • Programs of study (field(s) of study and degree objective being sought)
  • College(s) enrolled in
  • Dates of attendance (including current classification or year)  
  • Full-time/part-time enrollment status
  • Photographs and video recordings of students in public or non-classroom settings (photographs from classrooms or class related activities are NOT directory information)
  • Registration in a study abroad program
  • Degrees, certificates, honors, scholarships, and awards received  and date awarded as well as those applied for during the current academic term
  • Information about participation in officially recognized activities and sports
  • Job title, employing department, work phone number, and work address when employed in a position that requires student status 

Students can restrict either their directory information (items 2 through 6 above), their academic information (items 7 through 11 above), or both. This is accomplished on MyUI, under Student Records, Student Life Management, Restrict or Unrestrict Student Information.

The Dean of Students office has additional student record policy and directory information.

Is the University of Iowa obligated to release directory information?

FERPA states that an institution may release directory information. We are not, however, required to do so. If you encounter a situation in which you are uncomfortable providing information, do not do so. If the requesting party is insistent, contact the Office of the Registrar.

What can be released to military recruiters? - Solomon Amendment

Under the Solomon Amendment, institutions are required to provide directory-type information on students, at least 17 years of age who are registered for a least one credit, upon request from representatives of the Department of Defense for military recruiting purposes. This information, referred to as “student recruiting information”, includes: student name, addresses, telephone listings, age or year of birth, place of birth, level of education or degrees received, academic major, and the most recent previous educational institution in which the student was enrolled.

If a student has restricted their student information in MyUI, this restriction will be honored.

What information may be released without a student’s consent?

Directory information, information for which the student has given written release, information needed by a school official with a legitimate educational interest, final disciplinary results of a crime of violence committed by a student, parental notification of an alcohol/drug violation committed by a student under 21 years of age, disclosures to victims of crimes of violence or non-forcible sex offenses, disclosures to other schools which the student seeks or intends to enroll or where the student is already enrolled as long as the disclosure is for purposes related to the student's enrollment or transfer, and emergency situations where there is an imminent risk to health and safety.