Student Right-to-Know

· Student Right-to-Know
Student Right-to-Know 2021-07-26T13:19:32+00:00

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law that sets forth requirements regarding the privacy of student records. FERPA governs the release of these records (known as education records) maintained by an educational institution and access to these records. When a student turns 18 years old, or enters a postsecondary institution at any age, the rights under FERPA transfer from the parents to the student.

An education record is any record that contains information directly related to a student that is maintained by the institution. This includes, but is not limited to, grade information, disciplinary documentation, billing, financial aid data, and medical records.

  1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days after the day in which Northwestern State University receives a request for access. A student should submit to the University Registrar or other appropriate official a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The school 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 school official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA. A student who wishes to ask the University to amend a record should write the school official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.
    If the University decides not to amend the record as requested, the school will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing re­garding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  3. The right to provide written consent before the University discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without con­sent. The school discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests.Northwestern State University defines School Officials as “those who have a legitimate educational interest. School officials are those employees of the University (trustee, officer, agent, auditor, students serving on university committees, staff members of the Boards of Regents and Supervisors, contractors, volunteers, and other non-employees performing institutional services and functions) who act in the student’s educational interest within the limitations of their need to know.” Legitimate educational interest means “any authorized interest or activity undertaken in the name of the University for which access to an Education Record is necessary or appropriate to the proper performance of the undertaking. This includes faculty, administrators, classified and unclassified employees, legal counsel, auditors, undergraduate student workers, and graduate assistants charged with maintaining Education Records and acting within the course and scope of their employment and authority.”
  4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-4605

There are several exceptions to FERPA’s general prior consent rule that are set forth in the statute and the regulations. See § 99.31 of the FERPA regulations. One exception is the disclosure of “directory information” as set forth in FERPA guidelines (34 CFR § 99.31 [a] [11]).

FERPA defines “directory information” as information contained in the education records of a student that would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. Northwestern State University defines directory information as the following: student’s name; mailing address; campus e-mail address; photograph; telephone number; dates of attendance; enrollment status (e.g., undergraduate or graduate, full-time, or part-time); major field of study; participation in officially recognized activities and sports; weight and height of members of athletic teams; degrees, honors and awards received, including naming to honor rolls; and the most recent educational agency or institution attended.

Students may choose to have their directory information marked confidential at any time by printing the form, completing, signing, dating, and mailing or faxing the form below to the University Registrar’s Office.

No.  Students can print the form below, complete, sign, date, and mail or fax the form to the University Registrar’s Office.

Consent will remain in effect until a student submits a notification in writing revoking their consent.

Students can print the form below, complete, (including the revocation section), sign, date, and mail or fax the form to the University Registrar’s Office.

The FERPA statute is found at 20 U.S.C § 1232g and the FERPA regulations are found at 34 CFR Part 99. Additional FERPA information is available at the following website(s):

Contact Us

Office of the Registrar  [site]

Phone: 318-357-6171
Toll Free: 1-800-807-8849
Fax: 318-357-5823 or 318-357-4567

Veterans Affairs  [site]

Phone: 318-357-6171 Ext. 2
Toll Free: 1-800-844-8908
Fax: 318-357-5913

Office Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. CST

Record Type Location Custodian
Academic Records University Registrar’s Office
Student Services Center, Suite 308
Natchitoches, LA 71497
University Registrar
Financial Records Financial Aid Office
Student Services Center, Suite 212
Natchitoches, LA 71497
Director of Financial Aid
Disciplinary Records Student Services
309 Friedman Student Union
Natchitoches, LA 71497
Dean of Students
Health Records Health Services
111 Infirmary
Natchitoches, LA 71497
Director of Health Services
Student Account Records Student Accounting
Student Services Center, Suite 336
Natchitoches, LA 71497
Bursar of Business Affairs
Student Personnel Records Provost & VP
211 Caspari Hall
Natchitoches, LA 71497
Provost & VP for Academic Affairs

Standard University Resignation Refund Policy

For students resigning: The date that a student officially resigns from the University determines whether fees are refunded. A student who officially resigns from the University not be charged for classes) according to the following schedule:

Spring and Fall Semester:

Date of Resignation Amount of Refund

  • Before the First day of Classes 100%
  • First through the Seventh day of Classes 75%
  • Eighth through the Twelfth day of Classes 50%

Summer Semester:

Date of Resignation Amount of Refund

  • First and Second day of Classes 100%
  • Third and Fourth day of Classes 50%

Students who fail to cancel or resign from classes according to the above schedule will be charged for all fees associated with their registration. Once students enroll for classes, they must resign in accordance to the above schedule in order not to be assessed registration fees.

Add/Drop Fee Adjustment: Students who apply for and are permitted a reduction in hours scheduled during the first seven class days (two class days in the Summer) will be issued a full refund of the per credit hour fee for the number of hours dropped and applicable student self-assessed fees. No refunds will be issued for a reduction in credit hours after the seventh day. Students who add classes during the schedule adjustment period are required to pay the additional fee assessment in accordance to the fee payment schedule.

The following charges are non-refundable: Health Services Fee, Parking Permit Fee, Installment Plan charge, Late Payment Charges, Late Registration Fee, University Fines, Bookstore Charges, ID Replacement Charges, Credit Exam Fees, and the Application Fee. Housing charges are reduced by the Housing Office based on the student’s check-in and checkout dates. Meal Plan charges are reduced by Auxiliary Services based on the unused portion of the meal plan. Student insurance is refundable only if requested in writing to the Health Services Office within the first two weeks after the opening date of the regular semester’s registration with submission of proof of coverage under another policy.

Courses dropped with a grade of “W” are not refundable at any time and will not be credited to a student’s account. In some cases, the refund policy will result in a reduction of charges and not a “cash” refund.


At some time it may be necessary for a student to leave school. If this should occur, the student should not leave without completing an official resignation/cancellation form that will protect his or her academic standing. Please read carefully:

  1. A student is responsible for cancelling his/her registration before the first day of classes for a fall/spring term or no later than the second class day of a summer session, if proper financial arrangements have not been made.
  2. A student who fails to cancel his/her registration according to refund schedule will be obligated to pay for those classes in accordance with the current refund policy. Classes will NOT be dropped automatically due to non-payment of tuition and fees or non-attendance of classes.
  3. Students who drop all courses in which they are registered must officially resign from the University. Students cannot drop their last class via NSUConnect.
  4. Students who want to cancel their registration or resign from the University may initiate the resignation/cancellation process in the Office of the Registrar or go to the University Registrar’s Office Web page at to download a copy of the Resignation/Cancellation Form. Students must print, complete, sign, date, and fax the completed form to the Office of the Registrar at (318) 357-5823 or scan the completed form and e-mail it as a PDF attachment to
  5. Students unable to come to campus and/or without Internet access may fax a letter of resignation/cancellation to the University Registrar’s Office at (318) 357-5823.
  6. A student may resign from the institution with grades of “W” prior to a date specified in the official University academic calendar.
  7. Students who leave the University without completing an official resignation/cancellation form may have grades of “F” or “WN” recorded in all courses in which they are registered and will be charged all fees associated with their registration.