Recording Class Sessions Policy

Please see the Recording Class Sessions Policy, attached and listed below.

Title Recording Class Sessions Policy

Responsible Unit: Faculty

Approval by: Academic Excellence Committee, Dean’s Council

Effective Date: December 15, 2018


This policy is intended to protect SPS students’ right to privacy and to ensure that instructors and other members of the School of Professional Studies appropriately and legally mange the recording of class sessions for educational purposes.


At the School of Professional Studies, Columbia University recordings of student activity in face-to-face or online classrooms may be used for internal class purposes only during the period in which the course is being offered.

Recordings are the default in online classes; however, Instructors can choose at their discretion:

  • whether or not to record a face-to-face or online instructional setting;
  • to turn recordings off at any time during the lecture; and
  • whether or not recordings of their classes will be posted to the online site for that class (e.g. Canvas).

Recordings are considered confidential and cannot be shared outside of the class section. Sharing is restricted exclusively to students and faculty registered in that class section.

The SPS Syllabus Template will include language that states:

All or portions of the class may be recorded at the discretion of the Instructor to support your learning.  At any point, the Instructor has the right to discontinue the recording if it is deemed to be obstructive to the learning process.

If the recording is posted, it is considered confidential and it is not acceptable to share the recording outside the purview of the faculty member and registered class.

Storage of recordings:

Zoom recordings will be available for view for 30 days and then archived by the Online Support team.

Administrative use: As provided for in FERPA, the University may release such records to:

Officials of the University who have a legitimate educational interest (including persons with whom the University has contracted) in obtaining access to the records. Such access will be granted if the official needs to review an educational record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.

An example of such ‘legitimate educational interest’ is when a recording of an instructional activity is viewed by the Faculty Affairs team at the School of Professional Studies in order to review and enhance the quality of teaching and learning in the class.


There are no exceptions to this policy.

Primary guidance to which this policy responds

  • Columbia’s ‘Standards and Discipline: Student conduct and community standards

Click to access StandardsandDiscipline.pdf

  • Columbia University Copyright Policy

  • Columbia University Policies: FERPA for Faculty & Staff

  • Data Classification Policy

Click to access Data_Classification_Policy.pdf

  • Essential policies for the Columbia community: Policy on Access to Student Records (FERPA)