Confidentiality of Student Records

students using laptopRestricting Directory Information

Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the university can release — without your authorization — certain information about you. This information is called "directory information."

However, you have the right to restrict the release of all directory information by completing a form available from the Registrar's Office, 2202 C.B. Hedgcock. This may be done at any time during the semester.

You may also request to withhold directory information from the university telephone directory. See related articles below: "Implications of restricting your information" and "Withholding information from campus phone book."

The following information may be released unless you specifically request otherwise:

  • name
  • local address, local telephone number, permanent address, permanent telephone number
  • NMU e-mail address
  • dates of attendance at the university, enrollment status, degrees earned, honors, awards, participation in officially recognized university activities and sports (includes height and weight of student athletes), current term candidacy for degrees and/or teaching certification
  • program level, class standing, major/minor
  • your image in photographs the university uses

Requesting a restriction of any of the above categories of information will result in a confidentiality indicator being set on your record FOR ALL INFORMATION. This means that you must transact all business in person or via the Web. NMU staff will not be able to assist you over the phone, nor will the university acknowledge your presence as a student to outside agencies or in university publications.

Restricting Information from the NMU Telephone Directory

The following information is published each year in the Northern Michigan University "directory":

  • name
  • local address
  • local telephone number
  • permanent address
  • permanent telephone number 

All students who are enrolled for the fall semester are listed in the directory unless they request non-disclosure of directory information. Students who have previously requested non-disclosure of directory information will not have their name and address published in the campus directory.

Students may request to have their information omitted from the telephone directory by restricting the release of directory information. Restricting telephone directory information sets a confidentiality flag for all information.

To restrict directory information, bring your picture I.D. to the Registrar's Office, 2202 C.B. Hedgcock. The deadline for restricting information for the printed telephone directory is the first Friday in September. The online directory is updated two weeks into each semester.

The printed NMU telephone directories will be available for pick up at the Dean of Students Office in mid-October.

Implications of Restricting Your Information

Exercising your right under FERPA to restrict your information has wide implications. If you restrict any information, you are telling the university that you do not want NMU to acknowledge your presence as a student to any outside agency in any way. This means that you will have to conduct all business either in person with proper photo identification or on your mobile device at mynmu.nmu.edu. Staff members cannot assist you over the telephone.

The ramifications of restricting directory information is far reaching. It means that your enrollment cannot be verified to any outside source such as potential employers, colleges or universities or medical insurance companies. Your name will not appear in any official university publication distributed to the public, such as the Dean's List, a theatre or commencement program, and no information concerning your accomplishments can be provided to the media including academic or athletic recognition.

A restriction that you place on your information lasts until you remove it, even though you may no longer be a student. If you leave the university without removing the directory information restrictions, the university will not verify to a future employer or anyone else that you had attended or graduated from NMU.