FAQ for Faculty: Online Class Recordings

This document includes common questions with answers related to methods for sharing recordings of online class sessions.

  1. A student in my class is approved for audio recording through the DAC. How should I proceed if another student does not consent?

Refer to the Class Recordings Decision Tree: ADA & FERPA.


If you have any students working through our Disability Access Center, who have been granted ADA accommodations that include access to a recording of each class, the ADA requires that those accommodations be made. Recording classes for accommodation purposes and sharing those recordings with the student who was granted the accommodation does not invoke FERPA, and getting consent from others in the class is not necessary.

  1. How will I obtain consent from students?

A sample consent form, reviewed by WWU legal counsel, is available on Canvas Commons to import into your courses. Search Canvas Commons for “wwu covid” to find this. See also: Instructions for Using Canvas Survey: Consent Form for Online Class Recordings.

  1. If a student says no to being recorded during live online class sessions (or later revokes consent)…

    1. Can this impact their grade if they don’t attend the sessions?

That is not advised; ensure that an alternative option is made available.

  1. If they don’t attend the sessions, it could impact their learning; how might I address this?

If recorded, the recording can be made available in Canvas for later review with an alternative option, such as in a discussion board.

  1. Can the student still attend the sessions?

Yes. See also the answers to d. and e. below.

  1. How can I ensure that a student who does not consent to being recorded does not end up in the recording?

It is highly advisable that you provide detailed instructions for how students can maintain anonymity if you are recording the classes. The default settings for Zoom meetings allow for students to enter sessions with their audio muted and video off. Students can enter with a pseudonym or rename themselves during the session to hide their identity. You may wish to remind students of that at the beginning of class. You may post information from this site to your Canvas course or your syllabus: How to Participate in Zoom Privately.

  1. What do I do if a student who participates in class is personally identifiable in the recording but did not give consent?

Recordings can be edited to exclude students with personally identifiable information.

  1. What if I don’t record my live online class sessions?

Ensure you are in compliance with any accommodations requests made by the Disability Access Center. Ensure you are creating alternative learning materials so that all students can fully participate in the class.

  1. If I don’t record my live online class sessions, do I still need to do a consent form?

No. Refer to the Class Recordings Decision Tree: ADA & FERPA.

  1. What if I plan to share a recording that includes personally identifiable information with a different Canvas course?

Refer to the Class Recordings Decision Tree: ADA & FERPA.

  1. What if I share a recording that does not include the personally identifiable information of any student with other sections of a course or a different Canvas course?

The video recording may be shared without obtaining consent. Refer to the Class Recordings Decision Tree: ADA & FERPA.

  1. If I have several sections of a course combined into one “cross-listed” course in Canvas, can I share one recording with all sections?

Yes, with consent. Refer to the Class Recordings Decision Tree: ADA & FERPA.

  1. If I use Zoom’s automatic setting that notifies participants they are being recorded, will that suffice?

Notifications are useful and advisable, along with instructions telling students how to ensure that they are not personally identifiable in the recording. Giving notice does not replace the need for consent. To determine if consent is required, refer to the Class Recordings Decision Tree: ADA & FERPA.

  1. Are videos being sold to 3rd parties or being used for commercial purposes?




  • FERPA Questions: Shelli Soto, Registrar, Registrar’s Office, WWU
  • Technical Questions: Justina Brown, Instructional Designer, Center for Instructional Innovation & Assessment, ATUS, WWU
  • Accommodations Questions: Jon McGough, Director, Disability Access Center, WWU