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Widening Participation and data protection

This guide explains what, why and how data are collected for students taking part in widening access outreach activities and their rights regarding that data.


Why are we collecting your data?

The University of Bath is required by the Office for Students (OfS) to widen access to university ensuring that students from all backgrounds can access higher education (HE) study equally. Once studying a degree course, the University ensures that students from all backgrounds are equally supported to achieve their potential. The OfS regulate this activity and measure the University’s performance against a set of targets set in our Access and Participation Plan.

As the Widening Access Team we run several outreach activities and we collect the details of those taking part so that we can plan the activities, assess participation in activities and occasionally so we can stay in touch.

We are required by the OfS to gather and report on evidence showing the effectiveness of individual activities we run as well as our whole programme of outreach. We therefore use the data we collect pertaining to those students who take part in our outreach activities, to demonstrate this and as we are can require us to follow up with students we have worked with, to see whether they go on to study in HE.

Under data protection law we are able to process this data because it is necessary for a task carried out in the public interest.

What will we use your data for?

We use your data to:

  1. Deliver, monitor, and evaluate our Widening Access outreach programmes
  2. Track to see whether or not you go on to study in HE
  3. Produce academic research

If we go on to publish any reports or academic research, the publications will not contain your personal data, all data used will be anonymised.

We may additionally use your information to support your application if you choose to study at the University of Bath in the future. This could be flagging your application for an alternative offer if you have completed a relevant programme or using the information as part of our contextual admissions policy.

An example of how we could use your data:

We could use your data to understand whether students who took part in one of our widening access outreach programmes were more likely to attend university than students who did not. In this instance we may choose to publish a report or academic paper with the results, but the data will be anonymised and shared in aggregate. Sharing the answer to this question with the sector enables practitioners to understand what works and what doesn’t, to help improve the Widening Access programmes on offer for students.

What personal data do we collect?

We may collect and process personal data about students, parents/carers and teachers who participate in one of our programmes, activities, events or webinars.

If you attend an Outreach event, activity or programme organised or run by the University of Bath.

We collect the following data either from individuals or via schools and colleges:

  • First name
  • Last name
  • Date of birth
  • Postcode
  • The name of school or college
  • Free School Meal / Pupil Premium status
  • Other equal opportunity monitoring information where appropriate.

We collect additional data from individuals who apply to our more intensive programmes and these young people and parents/carers provide their own data directly and are asked directly for permission for us to use it. This could be data such as (in addition to above):

  • Information about health conditions
  • Disability
  • Ethnicity
  • Dietary requirements
  • Details of emergency contacts

If you attend an Outreach event, activity or programme we may also take photographs, audio recordings, and video recordings of you if you have not objected to us doing so.

If you attend an event organised by a third party:

If you indicate to the organiser that you consent to be contacted by University of Bath and they have notified you they will do this, the personal details you provide to the event organiser may be shared with the University of Bath.

If you use a third-party service / are part of a programme of activity with a third-party that has a relationship with the University of Bath

If you have indicated to the service provider that you wish to be contacted by University of Bath and they have notified you they will do this, the personal details you provide to them may be shared with the University of Bath

Teacher contacts for marketing purposes

We collect teacher details from individuals or via schools and colleges for marketing purposes, this would include:

  • First name
  • Last name
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • Position in the institution

Who we share your information with?

Some data may be shared with other educational institutions, for example, the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), UCAS and the Higher Education Access Tracker (HEAT), or similar or replacement bodies, as this enables us to see whether or not young people apply for and move into HE. We will not share your data with any non-educational organisations, (except as required by law). Please see the relevant privacy notices for each organisation if you would like to know more about how your data is processed by them.

Data will only be shared using secure data transfer methods and stored by us and our partners on secure systems. We and our partners will not use your personal data in any way that would affect you individually. Where data is passed to third parties, it is done so in compliance with Data Protection law.

Where information is used in the few public reports we produce, it is summarised and anonymised.

We never share your information with other organisations for marketing purposes.

How long do we keep your information for?

The University of Bath has retention schedules that set out how long we keep information of all types.

We will retain records securely for the durations detailed below.

Under 21 years old at the time of 1st outreach activity:

  • Your data will be retained until you reach 30 years of age

Over 21 years old at the time of 1st outreach activity:

  • Your data will be retained for 10 years after your first outreach activity

We keep student data for this length of time to enable us to determine whether our outreach activities have been successful in widening access to Higher Education.

After this time has been reached, data will be anonymised in bulk at the beginning of the next academic year. This retention policy will be reviewed each year to ensure it remains fit for purpose and compliant with relevant legislation.

Any personal data gathered through activities or approved platforms is reviewed regularly, and data is deleted when it is no longer required for monitoring, research, and evaluation purposes.

How do we keep your data safe and secure?

The privacy of those participating in our activities is important to us, and the University takes care to safeguard it. Information will be used and stored securely in accordance with the EU General Data Protection Regulation and Data Protection Act 2018, as well as all legislation enacted in the UK in respect of the protection of personal data ("Data Protection Legislation").

Opting out of choosing to share your data with us

When you complete an application for one of our programmes you will be given the option to opt out of having your data shared with our partners or used for public reporting as detailed in this privacy statement. However, to be able to participate in our widening access outreach programmes we need to collect some of your data, such as your name and your date of birth, in order to run the programme. By applying to one of our programmes you are consenting to us collecting and using your personal data as necessary for the purposes of

  • Assessing your eligibility and to allow us to deliver the programme
  • Monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of our Widening Access outreach programmes

Your rights as a data subject

You have a number of rights under data protection law, these are: - Be told how we use your information - Ask to see the information we hold - Ask us to change information you think is wrong - Ask us to remove information when it’s not needed anymore - Ask us to only use your information in certain ways - Tell us you don’t want your information to be processed.

You have the right to request for your data to be removed from our system. If you have a query, complaint or request about the use of your data please email with the email subject ‘Data Enquiry’.

You can request copies of data that we hold about you. This is called a Subject Access Request. For further information see Subject Access Request Form.

Changes to this privacy notice

We may need to change this privacy notice from time to time. This privacy notice was published on 05/10/2022.

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