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FERPA Training

West Chester University has a legal obligation to ensure compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), which governs release of, and access to, student education records. The law, and the University’s Privacy Policy, apply not only to current students but to all individuals who have ever attended the university. 

Screenshot of FERPA Training Progress in D2LAll employees of the university are legally and ethically responsible for protecting student privacy. Failure to comply with FERPA threatens the University’s federal funding from the Department of Education, and can lead to formal student complaints with the United States Department of Education.

As part of the University’s compliance initiatives, the Registrar’s Office partnered with IS&T to provide online training courses to help employees understand FERPA, the University’s Privacy Policy, and compliance requirements.

The FERPA project required a team approach. The initial step was to create a staff role in D2L and add every WCU staff member to our learning management system. Enterprise Services was instrumental in creating an automated process that would ensure all faculty, staff, and student employees have D2L accounts. Once enrollment was finished, Distance Education Services worked closely with the Registrar’s Office to organize the course content into two fully-responsive and engaging online course modules. Distance Education Services staff collaborated with the Office of Educational Accessibility to confirm the content and supplemental documentation were accessible for all users. The D2L Services office provides ongoing support for both the employees and the training sites.  D2L Services staff assisted both teams through the creation of a custom report, the course shells, and fully tested the course enrollment, the course modules and automated emails that are associated with the courses. The culmination of the project resulted in two FERPA training courses that were developed in support of complying with this critical training initiative: one for all faculty and staff and the other for student employees.

All employees must complete the FERPA training. The online and self-paced courses are administered through D2L and were developed using D2L, Articulate, Camtasia, GoAnimate, Canva, and PeopleSoft. Employees can start and leave the course as often as needed and both conclude with a quiz at the end. 

The collaborative partnership between the various departments (D2L Services, Distance Education Services, and Registrar’s Office) supported a successful launch and WCU’s completion of a strategic initiative. These accomplishments laid the foundation for future opportunities to expand usability and delivery for similar offerings partnered with products such as the learning management system (Brightspace by D2L) and the student information system (PeopleSoft).

If you have any questions, please contact

Office Resources

FERPA Flyer for Office

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Screenshots of the FERPA Course in D2L

FERPA Training Screenshot from D2L
FERPA Training Screenshot from D2L
FERPA Training Screenshot from D2L
FERPA Training Screenshot from D2L