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RECORDS VS GRADES. ROUND 2 Vicki Meyers, Fiona Hert, Kathy Keating, Ken Fridsma, and Diane Patrick. Background. The question was this : What does GRCC define as a record vs. a grade and what are faculty required to keep regarding student records? For how long and in what format?

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Records vs grades



Vicki Meyers, Fiona Hert, Kathy Keating, Ken Fridsma, and Diane Patrick


The question was this:

  • What does GRCC define as a record vs. a grade and what are faculty required to keep regarding student records?

  • For how long and in what format?

  • What policies dictate our practice?

What do we know
What do we know?

  • Faculty Contract (article 6.E) states that faculty are required to “maintain records of individual students for seven (7) years” yet there is not a consistent definition of what a record entails.

  • The grading policy does not include requirements regarding supporting materials or student records/length of how long student records are to be maintained and in what format.

  • Registrar requires the final grade submitted within the designated time frame established (72 hrs.)

  • We do distinguish an Incomplete as up to 1 year from issue therefore it is assumed faculty are keeping recordsfor at least that time period.

Proposed working definitions
Proposed working definitions:

  • Faculty Record = a record of all the assessments, evaluations, test results, papers, projects, etc., that a student and faculty utilize in the completion of the class and awarding of a grade.

  • Student Grade = the letter grade assigned to the student compiled by the faculty from their record of the students performance in fulfilling the requirements of the class. (Determined by Grading Policy 7.1 - Grading Procedures)

  • Student Record = students do not keep records.  The student record is a record of each class taken by the student and the resultant grade maintained by the Registrar/Records Office.

Fall 2012 what we have learned
Fall 2012 - What we have learned:

  • Table discussion data collected at September

  • Departmental feedback requested (six departments responded – Nursing, Music, English, Psychology, Physical Science, and Counseling

  • Findings were divided into 4 categories of consistent responses

  • Common threads in widespread responses

Department specific
Department specific:

  • Consistency in citing the 7 year contract rule (confusion of what, how, where)

  • Final grades and attendance

  • Supportive of the 1 day past the grievance policy rule

  • Accreditation specific requirements for 2 departments

  • Specific to 1 department (Music) was the archiving of all student work for life to benefit student transfer “Image Now”

Records vs grades

Questions asked:

Contract Language of 7 years - Many questioned why, what are we supposed to keep and in what format. Old Faculty Association language.

Is this law driven by financial aid, military, medical leave, job training? Yes, FERPA, Financial aid, medical leave, and Registrar.

Is this driven by our College accrediting body, the Higher Learning Commission? Yes and the laws that govern educational institutions.

Questions continued
Questions (continued):

  • Many faculty assume grades are secured automatically in Blackboard even though the course disappears at 1 year and 2 weeks. Grades must be entered into PeopleSoft as required by the Registrar and are kept indefinitely.

  • Security and storage of “records” whose responsibility is this? Faculty and college - electronic, traditional paper grade book? Departmental and Faculty responsibility.

  • Responsiveness of college to provide security and storage (electronic, file)? For grades only; departments would keep faculty records.

  • Responsiveness of college to provide safe disposal of records? This will need to be determined in forthcoming Records Retention Policy.

Faculty records what should this include faculty wanted to know
Faculty Records – What should this include? Faculty wanted to know!

  • Final grade for course

  • Attendance records

  • Emails, notes, early alerts

  • Field work (anecdotals)

  • All Departments will need to determine

Determination of how long to keep faculty records
Determination of how long to keep Faculty Records:

  • For Financial Aid regulations, records must be kept for five years (from graduation or last date of attendance). They will only need the information that the Records Office/Registrar keeps regarding courses registered for, courses completed, final grades, and the last date of attendance.

  • Financial Aid and the Registrar’s office do not need faculty attendance records, test/exam/quiz results, papers, or other elements that a faculty member may keep should a student dispute or grieve a grade.

  • Both Financial Aid and the Registrar’s office would support keeping student grades and records (as noted above) for five years.

  • Departments will need to determine their own needs and create a list of documents required.


  • Modify the Faculty Association contract, Article 6E, to reduce time frame from 7 years to 5 years to maintain faculty records.

  • Record Retention policy would be created to include departmental guidelines and college wide records requirements.

    • Departments would create process for collecting and maintaining faculty record guidelines for a period of five years.


Thank you