Outreach activity privacy notice

Outreach activity privacy notice

Why are we collecting your data?

Sheffield Hallam University undertakes outreach activities with schools, colleges and communities across the UK, to support progression and widen participation into higher education. This is part of our commitment as a university to open opportunities and transform lives, as well as part of government policy to widen participation in higher education, as overseen by the Office for Students.


We collect details of individuals taking part in our activities for the following reasons:

  1. To plan activities
  2. To monitor participation in activities
  3. To evaluate, research and report on the effectiveness and impact of our outreach activities
  4. To understand the student journey through education and progression to HE/future careers


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


Collecting information for individuals taking part in our outreach activities

We ask all participants to provide some information about themselves when taking part in any outreach or community engagement activity (either in person or online).  This is either collected directly from the individual or via the school/college parents/carers or third sector organisations as appropriate.  We also do this for HeppSY partner schools/colleges in full at the start of the year, if students have not taken part in any activity from members of the HeppSY partnership, their data will be securely deleted at the end of the next academic year.

We collect the following data from individuals either directly, or via schools and colleges for evaluation and research purposes:
Full Name Disability
Date of Birth Looked after child/ Care leaver status
Postcode Young Carer status
School/College name Estranged status
Unique Learner ID 1st generation of HE
Gender* Pupil premium/free school meals
Ethnicity Other equal opportunity monitoring information where appropriate

*Due to changes on the HEAT database, this information as collected by schools and colleges and shared with the HeppSY partnership will be recorded on HEAT under the label ‘Sex’. Data collected directly from participants as gender will be recorded in the same way.

How do we use your data and how do we keep it secure?

The privacy of students is important to us and the University takes care to safeguard it. Information will be used and stored in accordance with data protection laws and other applicable legislation.

Student data will be stored on a secure database (the Higher Education Access Tracker) and used to administer participation in outreach activities and projects.  For research and monitoring purposes only, this data may also be shared back with your school or college, with government and funding bodies and with our collaborative partners to help evaluate the effectiveness of this activity.

Privacy Notice for HEAT
Privacy Notice for HESA


To understand the effectiveness and impact of our outreach and community work, we may ask some questions before, during or after the activity to evaluate and inform future programmes. This may be in the form of surveys, questionnaires, focus groups etc.

The project and its partners will not use your record in a way that would affect you individually (any published findings of the research will not be at an individual level) and we will not release data to anyone who is unauthorised. Any reporting will be done so using aggregated data, meaning that individual students will not be identifiable. The University does not and will not, sell personal data to third party organisations.

How long do we keep your data?

We will retain records securely for the durations detailed below and will review our retention periods annually as the project develops in line with ICO guidance and other best practice in the sector.

  1. Where an outreach participant has supplied a first name, last name, date of birth, and postcode and has not withdrawn or denied permission for their data to be included in research and evaluation, their record is considered expired and will not be retained for longer than 15 years from:
    1. the year in which they might be expected to enter HE, or
    2. the date their record was created, or
    3. when they last engaged in outreach activity, whichever of these conditions is most recent.
  2. Where personal data is considered incomplete, i.e. the following has not been captured:
    1. any or all of first name, last name, date of birth, postcode
    2. and/or the data subject’s permission for inclusion in tracking research, it will be considered expired after 7 years from the date the record was created. except where a data subject has taken part in an activity within the last 7 academic years.

After this time has been reached, data will be anonymised in bulk at the beginning of the next academic year. Any personal data gathered through activities or approved platforms is reviewed regularly, and data deleted when no longer required for monitoring, research, and evaluation purposes.

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

Your rights

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.

If you have a query, complaint or request about the use of your data, please contact the Access Development team via email access@shu.ac.uk or telephone 0114 225 4777.

The work undertaken has been independently reviewed by the University's Research Ethics Committee and has approved guidelines for the conduct outlined above.  If you have a concern with how the research was undertaken you can contact the Research Ethics, via email ethicssupport@shu.ac.uk.

If you would like to request copies of your personal data held by the University please see our info about SARs (a subject access request). To exercise your other rights or speak with our Data Protection Officer please see our website.