The classroom is a learning space where students and faculty exchange ideas freely.  In a liberal arts college, learning happens in community with others.  Recording and distributing class lectures without faculty approval undermines “an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect in which scholarly work and learning thrive” (Student Integrity Contract).  This policy lays out when class recordings can be made and circulated, premised on core principles of academic freedom and academic integrity.

  • Written Consent and Personal Use. Students may not record any class sessions without requesting and receiving written permission from the instructor.  Student requests must include a brief rationale for the recording, the date(s) of recording, and its intended use.  The instructor must provide consent in writing before a class session can be recorded.  Moreover, before a class can be recorded, a student must sign this Student Pledge regarding Recording of Class Sessions, which affirms that any approved recording will be for personal use only (i.e., learning) and not circulated to anyone else. They should submit this form to their professor. Students who have an ADA-approved accommodation follow a different process (see below).
  • Scope of the Policy.  “Recording” refers in this policy to audio or video formats.  “Lectures” refers to all content shared during a scheduled class meeting, regardless of the class format (e.g., it applies to seminars, studios, and labs).  This policy also applies to class sessions held over Zoom or other online platforms.  SeeTrinity’s policy and guidelines for additional best practices regarding Zoom recordings.
  • Faculty Recordings.  Any and all recordings made by faculty of class lectures will beFERPA-compliant.  For example, class recordings should not be shared beyond the members of the class, unless they feature the instructor only.  Under no circumstances, should recordings with personally identifiable information about students be shared more broadly without students’ written consent.  Faculty requesting such permission from students should first contact their associate dean in the Office of the Dean of Faculty.
  • ADA Accommodations.  Some students who receive ADA-approved accommodations from the Student Accessibility Resource Center (SARC) also receive permission to record class sessions as part of their accommodation.  Nothing will change for these students as a result of this policy.  In such cases, students followSARC’s Trinity College’s Audio Recording Policy and sign the Student Pledge regarding Audio Recording of Class Lectures.
  • Academic Freedom,Academic Integrity, and Accountability.  This policy upholds both principles of academic freedom and academic integrity.  Any violation of the Student Pledge regarding Audio Recording of Class Lectures will be considered a conduct issue in violation of the Student Integrity Contract and will be subject to the College’s disciplinary procedures.  Those who believe their academic freedom has been violated should contact the faculty Academic Freedom Committee.  Implementation of this policy will be consistent with Trinity College’s Policy on Non-Discrimination and Policy on Sexual Misconduct, as well as our commitment to being a campus free of retaliation.
  • Course Syllabi and Awareness of the Policy.  Faculty may choose to include in their syllabus reference to or a copy of this statement.  Regardless of whether a statement is included on the syllabus, all students are responsible for following this policy, which will be posted in theStudent Handbook under its academic policies.  All first-year students will also receive information about the policy; and department chairs and program directors may also choose to disseminate the policy.