Article 3: Student Records at Michigan State University

3.1 Achieving educational goals, providing direction to graduate students, and extending service to society demand that the University keep records. All policies and practices concerning records shall be based on respect for the privacy of the individual graduate student as well as current federal and State law.

3.1.1 Because of respect for the privacy of the individual graduate student, record keeping must be performed only by University personnel whose job responsibilities require record keeping.

3.2 All policies and practices governing access to, and maintenance and release of, graduate student records shall conform to the University’s published guidelines. (See the MSU Access to Student Information policy at

3.2.1 No record shall be made, reproduced, or retained unless there is a demonstrable need for it that is reasonably related to the basic purposes and necessities of the University.

3.2.2 The University shall not make, reproduce, or retain records of a graduate student’s religious or political beliefs or affiliations without the graduate student’s knowledge and consent.

3.2.3 Graduate students shall have the right to inspect any of their own educational records, except as waived by the graduate student (e.g., confidential letters of recommendation). Student educational records include official transcripts, student disciplinary records, and records regarding academic performance. Students shall have the right to provide a written explanation for documents in their files. The explanation shall be included in the graduate student’s educational records file.

3.2.4 All policies and practices dealing with the acquisition and dissemination of information in graduate student records shall be formulated with due regard for the graduate student’s right to privacy and access.

3.2.5 All graduate student educational records used to make determinations of progress in the graduate student’s academic program or employment shall include a notation of the name of the person who supplied the information and the date of its entry, where practical, with the exception of central, Student Information System records.

3.2.6 Confidential records shall be responsibly handled. Units shall train persons handling such records in appropriate methods of keeping and disposing of confidential records.

3.2.7 No one outside the faculty or administrative staff of Michigan State University, except as permitted or specified by law, may have access to the record of a graduate student’s offenses against University regulations without the written permission of the student.

3.2.8 All policies governing the maintenance and the selective release of records and of portions of records shall be made public in an appropriate manner and shall be subject to judicial review as provided in Article 5. These policies and practices shall conform to current federal and State law. In addition, any changes to the policies shall be made known to the graduate student body through the all-university graduate student governing body.