Registrar's Notes

December 8, 2008


As you know the deadline for submission of fall grades is noon on Tuesday, December 16th. We will shut the grading system down shortly after noon to begin the grade roll process. When this is complete, the system will reopen and students will be able to view their grades through GoWMU. After this time, any grades submitted will be available for student view the following day.

Please remember that it is very important to students that they do receive their grades on Tuesday. Financial aid, scholarships, and graduation can all be affected when grades are not submitted by the deadline.

And also remember that all students need to receive a grade, including students in independent research, thesis and dissertation credits.

FERPA and parents

At this time of year, we all may find an increase in parents asking questions about their student. While federal law, FERPA, gives control of the release of the student records to the student, there are some ways parents can get information on their student.

  1. Students can give their parents, or others they designate, authorized user access to their financial and academic information. The academic information includes the student’s schedule, unofficial transcript, enrollment verification, midterm and final grades. This is an access initiated by the student, which the student can revoke at any time. All that is required is that the authorized user have an email account. This access does not give any staff member authority to discuss the student’s financial or academic information with a parent. Instructions are on: www.wmich.edu/registrar/authorized_user_student.html.

  2. A student could bring their parent or parents in with them to an appointment with an advisor or instructor. In such a case, I would advise that the advisor or instructor confirm with the student that they are okay with the parent being part of the discussion. And ask the student this privately, give them a chance to say that they do not want the parent to be part of any or all of the discussion.

  3. It is also possible to disclose information to a parent with the written permission of the student. In such a case, use a release form approved by our legal staff, such as the release found on www.wmich.edu/registrar/pdf/forms/PermissionReleaseInformation.pdf. Ensure that it is the student who has signed the release, and ensure that the parent or other who uses the release is the person so authorized, check the id. This is an approval that is initiated by the student, not the parent.

  4. Do not release any student information over the phone.

If you are in doubt about whether or not to release information, please call the Registrar’s Office, 269-387-4310.


There are currently 2,063 students eligible to graduate this coming Saturday in the three scheduled ceremonies. Of these, 1487 are undergraduates, 11 are earning certificates, 535 are masters students and 30 are doctoral students. For more commencement information, see www.wmich.edu/commencement.

Looking forward to Spring

The One-Stop Convenience Center will be open Monday, January 5th through Thursday, January 8th, from 10:00 to 6:00 each day in the North Ballroom, Bernhard Center. For more information, see: www.wmich.edu/registrar/onestop/index.html.

Spring dates:

  • Monday, Jan. 5 – Spring classes begin at 8:00 am.
  • Friday, Jan. 9 – Last day of drop/adds for students
  • Monday, Jan. 19 – MLK day, no classes
  • Friday, Feb. 27 – Spirit Day, no classes
  • Monday, March 2 – Spring break begins, no classes
  • Monday, March 9 – Classes resume
  • Monday, March 16– Last day students can withdraw
  • Monday – Friday, Apr 20-24 – Final exam week
  • Saturday, April 25 – Commencement
  • Tuesday, April 28 – Grades due at noon

Visit related WMU sites

There is a lot more to see! Visit some of our friends at WMU to learn about academics, costs of attendance, and campus life.

Office of the Registrar
1903 W Michigan Ave
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5256 USA
269 387-4300 | 269 387-3545