Disciplinary Notations

Trending Topic
In 1996, AACRAO identified the recording of disciplinary actions on the transcript as no longer a recommended best practice. Disciplinary actions differ from academic actions in that they are typically defined as violations of an institution’s code of conduct. They may include, but are not limited to, academic infractions (plagiarism, cheating, etc.) or misbehavior (harassment, sexual misconduct, substance abuse, etc.). Current debate involves the inclusion or exclusion of such actions on the transcript as a method of sharing behavioral information or protecting a student’s privacy rights.

Given the number of states that now mandate the inclusion of disciplinary actions on the academic transcript, AACRAO's recommendation on the issue has shifted from "Not recommended" to "Optional" in the updated edition of the 2016 Academic Record and Transcript Guide, released in December 2015.

Work Group

Kristi Wold-McCormick

University of Colorado Boulder – Registrar (Work Group Chair)

Lisa Dougherty

Virginia Commonwealth University – Undergraduate/Graduate Admissions Director

Susan Hamilton

Rutgers University School of Medicine – Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs

Brad Myers

Ohio State University – University Registrar

Nicole Pellegrino

Wells College – Registrar and Director of Academic Advising and Success

Bart Quinet

Vanderbilt University – Registrar

Hope Reynolds

Virginia Tech School of Medicine – Senior Director of Enrollment Management and Registrar

Angelique Saweczko

University of Calgary - Registrar

Tara Sprehe

Clackamas Community College – Associate Dean of Enrollment and Student Services

Shawn Sullivan

Northcentral Technical College – Director of Student Development


June 8, 2017

AACRAO press release: Higher Ed institutions to provide "some form of notice" to receiving institutions when serious behavioral misconduct occurs.

December 8, 2016

Congresswoman Jackie Speier Introduces Bill Requiring Transcript Notation for Students Who Violate School’s Rules or Policy Concerning Sexual Assault

May 9, 2016

The US Department of Education is calling on colleges to expand opportunities for the estimated 70 million Americans who have some form of a criminal record. In a 51 page guide, federal officials offer recommendations regarding the ways colleges ask students about their criminal or disciplinary records.

February 19, 2016

AACRAO press release on disciplinary notation change from "Not recommended" to "Optional."

December 4, 2015

AACRAO releases 2016 Academic Record and Transcript Guide. Book available here.


July 18, 2017

Universities consider disciplinary notes on transcripts. View article.

June 19, 2017

Louisiana Becomes First State to Ban the Box.

June 20, 2017

How closely should institutions monitor sexual assault convictions by their athletes? View article.

June 9, 2017

AACRAO referenced in Inside Higher Ed article "Guidance on Noting Misconduct on Transcripts." View article.

December 8, 2016

Mike Reilly quoted in Associated Press article "Colleges pushed to note sexual misconduct on transcripts." View article.

September 27, 2016

AACRAO referenced in Above the Law article "Criminally Yours: Even a Felon Deserves a Shot at College." View article.

February 25, 2016

AACRAO referenced in Education Drive article "AACRAO shifts guidance over disciplinary violations on transcripts." View article.

February 24, 2016

AACRAO referenced in Inside Higher Ed article "Registrars: Transcripts Can Cite Disciplinary Actions." View article.

February 24, 2016

2016 Academic Record and Transcript Guide referenced in Huffington Post article "Colleges Take a Step Toward Including Sexual Assault Punishments on Transcripts." View article.

February 19, 2016

Executive Director, Mike Reilly, quoted in Christian Science Monitor article "On college application, the questions some shouldn't be asked." View article.

January 29, 2016 

Executive Director, Mike Reilly, quoted in Lawyer Herald article "College Application Question About Past Run-In With Police In Draw Scrutiny For Being Discriminatory." View article.

January 28, 2016 

Executive Director, Mike Reilly, quoted in New York Times article "Students Punished For Sexual Assault Should Have Transcripts Marked, Title IX Group Says." View article.

September 24, 2015

Executive Director, Mike Reilly, quoted in Huffington Post article "Students Punished for Sexual Assault Should Have Transcripts Marked, Title IX Group Says." View article.

July 10, 2015

Executive Director, Mike Reilly, quoted in Inside Higher Ed article "Requiring a Red Flag." View article.

April 13, 2015

AACRAO President, Brad Myers, quoted in Huffington Post article "Some States are Considering Adding Sexual Assault Sanctions to Student Transcripts." View article.