Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Dispelling Myths: Parent/Family Access to Grades

Summer orientation is a wrap! On behalf of Northern Arizona University, I would like to thank you again for coming to orientation.  You were provided with a lot of information about the university and all the resources in place to help your student succeed.  As the school year goes on, you will find that to be helpful to both you and your student.

I would also like to thank you for providing feedback during our Parent and Family University session.  We will certainly use The Backpack as a means to keep you updated about campus and local events, as well as scholarship opportunities and other important deadlines as they arise.   On the other hand, many parents and family members indicated (in some form of fashion) that they would like progress reports and updates regarding their students.  While this information may have been available to you while your student was in high school, it is not as your student progresses into the college environment.   Depending on course structure, some professors will update student grades via Blackboard Learn.  Students will be notified of their midterm grade status if enrolled in 100 and 200 level courses.  Encourage your student to speak with their instructor if there are questions regarding grades.  Again, the course syllabus is the guide to any course, so encourage them to read that document thoroughly and refer to it often. 

Talk directly with your student about their courses and their progress in those courses.  You will find this to be the fastest method for finding out what their grades are.   You may request a copy of your student’s records in writing if they have signed a FERPA release granting you access to that information.  More information about FERPA can be accessed here.
For additional clarification, Guardian Access solely allows you to view and pay your student’s financial charges.  For more information regarding Guardian Access, visit the NAU parents’ webpage for a tutorial.  Your student has the right to administer and revoke access. 

Don’t worry; this will all make sense soon enough! 

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