Organisational Development and Professional Learning

Policy on Data Storage and Retrieval

Policy statement

OD&PL collects and stores data for the purposes of course administration and summary staff development records. It is the policy of OD&PL to ensure that data are stored securely and checked for authenticity and accuracy as the opportunity arises. Data are stored on a long-term basis so that appropriate summary data can be provided to Faculties/Schools/Services on request and to assist management decisions in OD&PL.

The following questions and answers underpin the OD&PL policy on data storage and retrieval.

What information is stored?

The information that is provided on the standard OD&PL course application/registration forms (except information about an individual’s prior experience or needs/expectations from the course if that is asked for) and funding application forms. The feedback from courses (much of it anonymous) is retained for a maximum of 5 years for periodic review (or equivalent) purposes.

How is the information stored?

Information is stored electronically within SAP, the University’s corporate information system. OD&PL also has a number of smaller Access databases. Once a non-accredited course has taken place, any paper records are disposed of except for the alphabetic attendance list and course feedback forms. These are kept for 5 years and then destroyed. Sensitive data – both on paper and computer – are stored, received and transferred in a confidential manner. Prior to the introduction of databases only alphabetic attendance lists were kept. For accredited programmes (ULTA, PGCLTHE, PGCAP & PGDLTHE) the paper application forms and feedback sheets are retained by the University indefinitely. Funding application forms are stored in manual files for 5 years.

What is done with and to the data?

The information is collected to enable efficient course administration (attendance lists, confirmation of place, briefing of course tutors, etc). Registration data are supplemented with attendance data after a course has taken place. From time to time stored, email addresses may be used by OD&PL to compile distribution lists for mailing information to selected groups of staff or postgraduate research students. Such email lists will not be made available to non-OD&PL staff.

Quotes collected from customer feedback may be used, suitably anonymised, in promotional material. Staff not wishing to have comments used in this way can choose to opt out of this convention.

Information in relation to a person’s booking and attendance will, from time to time, be shared with other people within the University who we believe have a legitimate need to know, including deans, heads, HR managers, PGR tutors/secretaries.  Information about bookings/attendance for particular courses will also be shared with the tutor – either external or internal – for that course.

The data are also processed so as to provide OD&PL performance indicators and management information (decisions about funding and repetition of courses, etc).

Data will be used to confirm achievement of qualification and enable production of certificates for staff who complete approved/accredited courses in accordance with University regulations. These details will only be released to another institution / provider for the purposes of gaining advanced standing when requested by the individual concerned. Staff receiving or transferring sensitive data beyond the University of Leeds are mindful of the need to maintain confidentiality and the requirements of the Data Protection Act.

How long are the data stored for?

Appropriate data are stored for as long as is necessary in order to satisfy the above needs.

Who has access to the data?

The SAP system and other databases are available to staff in OD&PL who enter, retrieve and process information for course administration and summary purposes. Access to databases is restricted by password protection. Faculties/Schools/Services which request reports will have access to the summary, but not the unprocessed, data. Summary data includes names of staff/students, category of staff/student, course titles and dates.

How are the data checked for accuracy?

Conflicts in data will be resolved as they arise: for example the details on a new registration form not matching those in an existing record. Participants on ULTA, PGCLTHE & PGDLTHE will be provided with a summary of personal details and course progression information at intervals as a means of maintaining the currency of the data recorded and checking on participants’ plans.

Can a member of staff request to see the data stored on him/her?

A member of staff may ask to receive a copy of the data stored on him/her. Applications should be made in the normal way to Sue Harper in the Secretariat, R11/72 EC Stoner Building.

Organisational Development and Professional Learning

April 2017

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