FERPA Student FAQs

Can my parents or spouse obtain information about me?

Without your express, written permission, your parents or spouse, like all other third parties, may have access only to your directory information. If you have restricted your directory information from access by the public, then those items of directory information are considered confidential, and cannot be released to your parents, spouse or other third parties.

How do I give someone permission to view my educational records?

You may give Rice University permission to release educational records to specified individuals by filling out the Consent to Release Student Information Form.

How do I withhold my directory information?

1. Login to ESTHER.

2. From the ESTHER main menu, click Personal Information.

3. Click Students - Release or Withhold Directory Information.

4. In the Type your Full Name field, type your first name, middle initial or name, and last name.

5. In the Withhold my Directory Information field, select Yes to withhold your information or No to release your information.

6. The Date Last Executed and Last Response fields will display when you last updated this information and the current status of your directory information.

Please Note: If you withhold your directory information, your directory information will be completely suppressed. Academic and administrative departments will not be permitted to publish your directory information, including your name, without first obtaining your written consent. This applies to publications of awards, departmental honors, President's Honor Roll, etc.

What are my rights under FERPA?

Under FERPA, a student is afforded the following rights with respect to their education records:

  • the right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days after the date Rice University receives a request for access;
  • the right to seek amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA;
  • the right to provide written consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information ("PII," as defined by law) contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent;
  • the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Rice University to comply with the requirements of FERPA.
What is the procedure to request to see my educational records?

A student should make a written request to any offices that maintain student education records, identifying the record the student wishes to inspect. The appropriate Rice official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the Rice official to whom the request is submitted, that Rice official will advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

Who can obtain access about my educational records?

A complete listing of situations in which access to educational records can occur is available in the Annual FERPA Notification.