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Please note: From time to time, Harvard Law School records classes for various reasons. Class recordings may be posted on internal secure course web sites for viewing or listening by students enrolled in the recorded course.  Classes may be recorded with or without further notice. Students may not record classes without the express permission of the instructor.

1. Student Class Recording Requests

Students may request that Media Services make an audio-only recording of class lectures for the following reasons:

  1. a) Major Religious Holidays: Classes taking place on major religious holidays are not automatically recorded.  Faculty and/or students may request that a class be audio-recorded on a major religious holiday through the Registrar’s Office (617-495-4612).  If a student has requested a recording, the Registrar’s Office will notify the instructor about the request. The Law School’s Media Services Department will not record for travel days surrounding religious holidays. If the religion’s holiday begins at sundown, Media Services will record classes upon request starting at 1pm on the day the holiday begins and ending at noon the day after the holiday ends.
  2. b) Make-up classes: The Law School’s make-up class period is 3:15-5:15 p.m. on Friday afternoons.  All faculty members are encouraged to use this period for make-up classes. Make-up classes scheduled during this time will not be recorded unless a student has a scheduling conflict with another make-up class.  In the case of a class conflict the student may request a recording through the Registrar’s Office (617-495-4612). If a student has requested a recording, the Registrar’s Office will notify the instructor about the request. Make-up classes at times outside this class period may be recorded, but only at the instructor’s request.
  3. c)   Birth of a child (for the parent(s)) or death of an immediate family member: Students may request that a class be recorded due to birth of a child for the parent(s) or death of an immediate family member by contacting the Dean of Students Office (617-495-1880). If a student has requested a recording, and the recording is approved by the Dean of Students Office, the Dean of Student’s Office will notify the instructor about the request and for approval. The recording will be sent to the student as a password-protected file for use by the student only.

Recording for these reasons will be considered only in cases in which classes will be missed for a period of two weeks or fewer. In most cases, a student’s absence from their classes for more than two weeks will be cause for a leave of absence (see Section I(M) and Section II(A)(3)).

2. Timing of Recording Requests

Requests for class recordings must be submitted by 3 p.m. two business days in advance of the class. Requests made later than 3 p.m. two business days prior to the class will be accommodated on a case-by-case basis and cannot be guaranteed. Fees may be incurred for last minute requests or for cancellations of class recordings without proper notice.

3. Automated Recordings

Harvard Law School recordings are automated. The automated start and stop times for recordings are associated with the class meeting times and, due to system constraints, cannot be altered. Therefore, if a class extends beyond the scheduled start and end times, the resulting recording will not include any instruction or discussion that took place prior to the scheduled start time or in the time following the scheduled end time. In addition, faculty should be aware that Media Services does not edit the head and tail of class recordings so conversation occurring before and/or after the formal instructional time will be viewable.

4. Student Recording of Classes

Students are not permitted to record classes. If a student wishes to obtain an exception from this rule in order to record a class he or she must miss, the student must obtain the instructor’s permission in advance.  The instructor must inform all the students that the class is being recorded.

Media Services does not record classes for students who will be absent from a class for any reason other than those listed above.  Faculty may not request to have a class recorded because an individual student or group of students has requested that the class be recorded, other than for the reasons noted above.

Students who receive permission from the instructor to record a class may borrow audio recording equipment from Media Service and/or have a fellow classmate record the class for them.  Even when instructors have consented to class recordings, classes may only be recorded for personal pedagogical use by the student or another student enrolled in the class. Students may not provide or distribute those recordings to others for any other purpose.

5. Publication of Recordings

a) Class recordings requested by faculty members, recordings made because of religious holidays, and make-up classes will be made available to the entire class via the Canvas course site.  Please note that faculty members and administrators of the sites reserve the right to remove any links from course websites at any time.

b) No person is permitted to post, distribute, or otherwise make available any recordings produced by the Harvard Law School Media Services Department without written permission of the Harvard Law School Communications Office.

c) It generally takes three business days excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and University holidays for the Media Services Department to process and post links for streaming media from the Harvard Law School media server.

d) All postings will be removed from streaming access (Harvard Law School server) and backed up after three academic years from the academic year of creation. The Media Services Department must be notified at the time a request is submitted if there is any reason that digital audio and video streaming media will require linking for longer than three years.  Instances requiring media storage longer than the default lifespan will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and may incur additional hosting costs to the requesting department or organization.

e) The Media Services Department is not responsible for hardship encountered with expired audio and video links if lifespan beyond the ordinary three years was not requested at the time of the recording request.

f) Although Harvard Law School makes every effort to ensure the security of recordings, any recording made by Media Services could potentially be downloaded, copied, manipulated and/or redistributed.