AccessHE Online Project – Privacy Policy

How we may use your personal information

AccessHE is a division of London Higher. London Higher and AccessHE are committed to protecting your personal information and being clear about what information we collect from you and how we use it.

If we make any changes to this policy, we will let you know by revising the updated date, placing an alert on the homepage of the website or corresponding with you directly.

If you have any questions about this policy or our uses of personal data, please contact accessheonline@londonhigher.ac.uk.

Who we are and how to contact us

A key division of London Higher and the largest network of its kind, AccessHE is the pan-London organisation that aims to support the progression of under-represented groups to higher education (HE). We do this by enabling HE institutions (HEIs), schools and colleges to achieve their objectives on widening access to HE more efficiently and effectively. We are also a partner in the London Uni Connect consortium, which delivers the government-funded Uni Connect Programme in London. Through this we facilitate the delivery of activities and programmes, such as HE taster sessions, mentoring, campus visits, and careers fairs, to prospective students either in school or in community settings.

All personal information provided by you through this website is under the control of AccessHE, who are responsible for taking care of your personal information in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2016/679) (GDPR). This policy may refer to AccessHE as: ‘AccessHE’, ‘our’, ‘us’ or ‘we’. Our registered office is: Tavistock House, Tavistock Square, London, WC1H 9JJ.

How to contact us

You can contact us via the following means:

Why do we collect data

We collect information about individuals who participate in the Uni Connect events and activities we deliver. We do this for the purposes of monitoring, evaluating and reporting on the effectiveness of this work in increasing progression to higher education amongst certain cohorts. The data we collect also enables us to improve the events and activities.

We collect this data under the legal basis ‘Legitimate Interest’ as set out in GDPR under article 6(1)f:

‘processing is necessary for the purposes of the legitimate interests pursued by the controller or by a third party except where such interests are overridden by the interests or fundamental rights and freedoms of the data subject which require protection of personal data, in particular where the data subject is a child.’

The legitimate interest for collecting and processing data is to enable the effective running and monitoring of outreach programmes AccessHE is involved in that directly support progression to higher education and social mobility in London.

What we collect

We collect the following data for the following purposes:
We collect your personal information about participants in our Uni Connect activities so we can measure their effectiveness for students from different backgrounds. To do this, we collect the information detailed below.

    • Your home postcode,
    • Your gender,
    • Your current school,
    • Your year group,
    • The country you live in,
    • The level of education of your parents/carers,
    • Your first spoken language,
    • Whether you are eligible for Free School Meals/Pupil Premium,
    • Whether you have been, or are currently in, local authority care,
    • Whether you are estranged from your family,
    • Whether you have any caring responsibilities,
    • Whether your parent is or has been in the military,
    • Whether you are an asylum seeker or refugee,
    • Whether you are a student, a member of school/college staff, a member of staff in a higher education institution/university or a parent/carer.

Where it is required for the effective review of the outreach activity in question, we may also collect the following special category data, subject to additional condition 9a of the GDPR (obtaining ‘explicit consent’ from individuals) being met:

    • Your ethnicity,
    • Whether you have a disability or mental health condition,
    • Whether you are from Gypsy, Roma or Traveller communities.

Sharing your information

For the purpose of monitoring the impact of AccessHE’s contribution to the Uni Connect programme, your personal information will also be shared with the London Uni Connect partnership. London Uni Connect is one of 29 partnerships, which provide targeted higher education outreach to young people in years 9 to 13 from areas with low rates of HE progression as part of the Uni Connect programme, which is funded by the Office for Students. The London Uni Connect partnership consists of three networks (AccessHE, Linking London and Aimhigher London) working in collaboration with Kingston University as lead Higher Education Institution.

The Higher Education Access Tracker (HEAT)

Personal data collected on learners who are engaged through the Uni Connect programme, will be stored and processed in the Higher Education Access Tracker (HEAT). A copy of HEAT’s data privacy notice can be found here: https://heat.ac.uk/data-privacy-participants/.

Data stored in HEAT will be used for tracking and monitoring purposes. This data will be accessible to AccessHE and London Uni Connect staff.

Our programme is funded by the Office for Students. As part of our funding agreement, data stored in HEAT will also be shared with the Office for Students and the appointed national evaluation suppliers for the Uni Connect programme.

Data stored in HEAT will be shared with the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) in order to link the data of learners engaged in the Uni Connect programme to the HESA dataset. This will help us to track learner progression to and through higher education. Further details can be found in HESA’s collection notice: https://www.hesa.ac.uk/about/regulation/data-protection/notices.

Our HEI members may also record this data on HEAT. Learner progress is tracked to investigate longitudinal impact on attainment, progression and social mobility.

For research, monitoring and tracking purposes, AccessHE, London Uni Connect or HEI members of AccessHE who have created courses may also share this information with reputable and reliable third parties. The information used for these purposes is aggregated (i.e. combined with other user data) and anonymised, and will not be provided in a way which identifies you. These institutions may include:

We may use the personal information we collect as the basis for research reports investigating the impact that AccessHE programmes and events have on progression to higher education and social mobility. These reports may be published on www.accesshe.ac.uk and/or www.accessheonline.ac.uk and made available to external audiences. You will not be identifiable in this data.

How we keep your information secure

We take steps to make sure we hold your personal information securely and share it with people or organisations who need to access it. For the duration of the Uni Connect project, information will be stored in password-protected folders on AccessHE secure servers and on the AccessHE Online website if use of the platform is required. Information will only be accessed by AccessHE staff.

The AccessHE Online website itself has several layers of protection:

    • Our secured sockets layer (SSL) encrypts all transmitted data from each user session ensuring any data intercepted is not readable.
    • Our firewall – Wordfence Premium – is installed on all websites. This will fight any threat/attack in real-time. For details see website.
    • We keep plugins up to date on a monthly basis in order to minimise risk against any known vulnerabilities with older versions.

In order to provide our service, we need to transfer information to other organisations. For example, we on occasion use Survey Monkey to collect and process personal data and this entails transfer of the data to the United States, where Survey Monkey’s data storage facilities are located. We make sure these third-party organisations commit to keeping your personal information secure and check their data policies to ensure they are in line with GDPR.

How long we keep your data

We keep data for extended periods of time to monitor the effectiveness of AccessHE’s Uni Connect activity. We will retain records securely for the duration detailed below and will review our retention periods annually in line with Information Commissioner’s Office guidance and other best practice in the sector.

    • Information stored on the website will remain there until a user contacts us to disable and delete their account or until the end of the Uni Connect project, whichever arises first.
    • Personal information stored on AccessHE’s secure servers will be deleted at the end of the Uni Connect project.

Requesting access to your personal data

You have the right, under the GDPR, to request a copy of your personal information we hold, to have it corrected, deleted, or to ask us to stop using it.

To request a copy of the personal information we hold about you – please send your request via email to: accessheonline@londonhigher.ac.uk.

To ask us to change, delete or stop using the personal information we hold about you – please send your request via email to: accessheonline@londonhigher.ac.uk.accessheonline@londonhigher.ac.uk We will always consider your request to make changes to your personal information and write back to confirm the action we have taken.

Other websites you can access from this one

Our website and privacy policy may contain links to other websites operated by other organisations or other websites operated by London Higher (such as: AccessHE, London Higher). We cannot be held responsible for the protection and privacy of any information you provide whilst visiting other sites. This privacy policy applies to this website only. Please make sure you read the privacy policy of the website you are visiting.

Changes to this policy

We may revise this Privacy Policy from time to time. The most current version of the policy will govern our use of your information and will always be at https://www.accessheonline.ac.uk/privacy-policy/ . If we make a change to this policy that, in our sole discretion, is material, we will notify you via email to the email address associated with your account. By continuing to participate in AccessHE activities after those changes become effective, you agree to be bound by the revised Privacy Policy.

Effetive: September 2021

Please note the AccessHE Online Privacy Policy has been updated and can be found here. Existing users can update their profiles by logging in here. If you have any queries then please email us at AccessHEOnline@londonhigher.ac.uk.