Student Directory, FERPA, and Releasing Information to a Third Party


Student Directory

Your name, address, phone, e-mail and program will appear in the student directory.  The distribution of the student directory includes all Northern Seminary students, faculty, and administrators.  It is generally used as a reference and to engender community.  It may not be used for marketing or solicitation purposes. Inclusion in the student directory is highly recommended for all students.

“Student Directory Information” can include the student’s:

  1. Name
  2. Address
  3. Phone numbers
  4. E-mail address
  5. Date and place of birth
  6. Honors and Awards, including degrees completed and when
  7. Dates of Attendance, including confirmation of present enrollment
  8. Photographs and recorded images
  9. Church and/or Denomination

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 gives educational institutions such as Northern Seminary the right to release student directory information (as listed above) to other students and to third parties. However, it also gives individual students the right to have Northern Seminary withhold their directory information from other students and third parties.  If you would like your information to be withheld from the directory please contact the Registrar at

Release to Third Parties

Northern Seminary is not obliged in any way to give out student directory information. Generally, we do not release your information to third parties.  However, we may release your directory information to third parties requesting such information under appropriate circumstances. All such requests are handled on a case by case basis, and no information is released unless we are convinced that it is very much in the student’s best interests that we do so. For example, we are generally willing to release your directory information to your denominational organizations if they request it. We will not release information for marketing or solicitation purposes.

You may authorize a third party (i.e. spouse) to discuss your account by completing and submitting the Authorization to Release Student Information on the Registrar’s page.

Note that all other student information is protected by FERPA. Such information would include:

  • Transcripted information of any kind
  • Information regarding a student’s schedule or classes
  • Information regarding disciplinary actions or legal actions
  • Financial or billing information of any kind
  • Social Security number or Student ID number

These kinds of information may be reviewed by authorized school officials, but may not be released to anyone else without the express consent of the student.  Please review Northern Seminary’s statement on FERPA in the seminary catalog for details.  If you have any questions regarding the use of directory information, FERPA, or any related issues, please contact the Registrar’s Office at (630) 620-2196 or at

**Notice** As of January 3, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education’s FERPA regulations expand the circumstances under which your education records and personally identifiable information (PII) contained in such records including your Social Security Number, grades, or other private information may be accessed without your consent. First, the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education authorities (“Federal and State Authorities”) may allow access to your records and PII without your consent to any third party designated by a Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is “principally engaged in the provision of education,” such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution. Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow access to your education records and PII without your consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, in certain cases even when we object to or do not request such research. Federal and State Authorities must obtain certain use-restriction and data security promises from the entities that they authorize to receive your PII, but the Authorities need not maintain direct control over such entities. In addition, in connection with Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, State Authorities may collect, compile, permanently retain, and share without your consent PII from your education records, and they may track your participation in education and other programs by linking such PII to other personal information about you that they obtain from other Federal or State data sources, including workforce development, unemployment insurance, child welfare, juvenile justice, military service, and migrant student records systems.