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Widening Participation Privacy Notice

Edge Hill University undertakes outreach activities with schools, colleges and communities across the UK, to support progression and widen access to Higher Education.

All data collected through Widening Access and Participation initiatives is processed and stored in accordance with the Data Protection Act (1998), General Data Protection Regulation (2018) and Edge Hill University’s Data Protection Policy.

Why do we collect and use this information?

  • To evaluate the long term effectiveness of outreach activity, as part of government policy to widen participation to Higher Education, including activity numbers and targeting efficiency.
  • To monitor and track the number of pupils participating in outreach activities to see if it has any long-term impact on progression to Higher Education, including UCAS and HESA choices to inform impact.
  • To standardise the recording of our interactions with schools and students. We are one of a number of universities using this national methodology.
  • To identify pupils who are the target demographic for the activity. For specific projects only, for example, as part of the National Collaborative Outreach Programme (NCOP) in Lancashire (Future U), Cumbria (Hello Future) and Merseyside (Shaping Futures).
  • To comply with the law regarding data sharing

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

For sustained outreach programmes and specifically targeted events, we will ask schools for this information as part of our Service Level Agreement and we have a template letter, which can be edited by the school, in order to inform parents/guardians about the programme.

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

Categories of data we collect, hold and share

  • Personal information (such as name, date of birth, postcode, gender, school attended)
  • Characteristics such as ethnicity, free school meal eligibility/pupil premium, year group, experience of Care (specific projects only)
  • Attendance across a series of outreach session or attendance across the school year (specific projects only)
  • Relevant medical, dietary or special educational needs information (ahead of a visit to campus)

Who we share the information with

Government and funding bodies include:

Our collaborative partners include:

How do we use your data and keep it secure?

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 the school or college, with government and funding bodies and with our collaborative partners to help evaluate the effectiveness of this activity.

The project and its partners will not use records in a way that would affect a student individually and we will not release data to anyone who is unauthorized. The University does not and will not, sell personal data to third party organisations.

How long will we keep the data for?

We will retain records for the duration of the longitudinal project, for up to 10 years. This is to provide supporting data on participation in HE outreach activities.

We will review our retention periods annually as the project develops in line with ICO guidance and other best practice in the sector. After this period, any personal information will be removed from our records, but we may continue to retain and process your information in an anonymized form.


The measures that we take to ensure data is collected, processed and stored securely are as follows:

  • If paper forms are used, they are stored in a locked drawer until they are transferred into a spreadsheet, then securely destroyed.
  • Electronic files containing individual data are password protected and stored on a secure file area accessible only to designated members of staff.
  • Access to files containing individual data is restricted to members of the Widening Participation team and, on occasion, designated student advocates carrying out administrative work for the department.
  • Data is stored on a secure online database accessible only to staff from Edge Hill University’s Education Liaison and Events Team, Widening Participation Team, and the central HEAT team.
  • Data is never published in a way that would allow an individual to be identified.

Your rights

You have the right to opt out of sharing your data at any time. Upon request by email to [email protected], we will inform you whether your personal information is stored by us.

You may also write to the Data Protection Officer at Edge Hill University, St Helens Road, Ormskirk, Lancashire, L39 4QP to ask for a copy of your information and we will respond within 40 days to requests for information sent by post.