Faculty and Staff FAQs

How does this legislation impact me as a faculty or staff member?

  • You may disclosure students contact information to other students enrolled in the institution for educational purposes or institution business, unless they have opted out of such disclosure.
  • Students who have opted-out will have a confidential flag on their account.
  • You should obtain affirmative written consent to disclose a student’s email, phone number or address to anyone who is not a school official or currently enrolled student.
  • Do not post student contact information on departmental websites without affirmative written consent.
  • You may access student contact information through University systems for legitimate educational reasons.

Can faculty and staff still access this information, or share it internally for legitimate educational purposes?

  • Yes.  Please use your official Mason email for all email communications.

Can a student be required to share their email, phone number or address with someone who is not a school official?

  • No.  If this creates problems due to program requirements, and a student does not wish to provide consent, contact the Office of the University Registrar for assistance.

Can a student be required to use software or an online program?

  • Yes.  Students may be required to use software or programs, if it has been approved for use by the Architectural Standards Review Board (ASRB).
  • Please contact the ASRB if you are not sure if the software or program you are using has been approved.
  • Platforms and websites that contain student contact information should only be accessible by active Mason students, faculty and/or staff.
  • Platforms and website that are accessible or share information with non-active students, such as alumni or guest users, should remove or mask student contact information.

Can I use Google docs to store or share student records ?

  • No.  Google Docs has not approved for use by the Architectural Standards Review Board (ASRB).
  • Mason has an agreement with Microsoft to use their programs. Utilize OneDrive if you need to use a program with capabilities similar to Google Drive.
  • Using uses Google Docs, or any other Google program for work purposes exposes faculty and staff to personal liability.

Will faculty have access to student email addresses if students are not enrolled in one of their courses?

  • Faculty members will retain access to class roster information in Blackboard and Patriot Web.
  • Faculty are only allowed to access the student contact information of students not in their class if they have a legitimate need to obtain that information to perform their job duties.

Can students voluntarily share their emails with other students?

  • Yes.  Students may voluntarily share their mailing address, email address, or phone number with other students.

What is the procedure to obtain student consent to release their contact information to third parties?

  • The student can choose to complete the Opt-In form.
  • If you collect and share contact information via a form or website, you may want to include a consent waiver in your terms of agreement.

How do I use the  Opt-In form to see if a student has provided consent?

  • Login to the Opt-In Form using your Mason Netid and Password
  • Search By ID (G#), or
  • Search By Name (First and Last), or
  • Search by Class (year and CRN)
  • Only active students, who do not have a confidential hold, will be displayed.

Can a student consent to disclose their contact information via email message?

  • Yes, if it is sent from the student’s official Mason email account to the faculty or staff’s official Mason email account.
  • The email must include what they are choosing to disclose, who they are consenting it be disclosed to, and the purpose of the disclosure.
  • The student may revoke their consent at any time.
  • Ensure you save a copy of the consent, such as in a PDF file or retaining it in your email account.

Can a student provide consent verbally?

  • No.  Students must provide consent in writing.

Can graduate research assistants, teaching assistants, and student workers access student contact information and other student records as part of their jobs?

  • Yes. Students doing work on behalf of Mason may access student records and share that information as necessary to fulfill their job duties.
  • All student workers should attend FERPA training.
  • Sign up for the Training is on the MasonLEAPS.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email