Student and staff data: use of data analytics and machine learning

Jen Persson made this Rhyddid Gwybodaeth request to University of Sussex as part of a batch sent to 60 authorities

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

Roedd y cais yn rhannol lwyddiannus.

Dear University of Sussex,

I am making a request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).

Please can you provide information pertaining to any data analytics software used by the university using personal data about your students and staff, since 2012.

1a). Whether you are using any data analytics software at all:
1b) if so, which ones?
1c) what date this data analytics processing began?
1d) indicate whether in the past and ended, or still in current use

2a). Any predictive analytics software such as used in but not only, Blackboard, Xray and JISC supported Civitas.
2b) if so, which ones?
2c) what date this analytics processing began for predictive purposes?

3. If the answer to Q1a or Q2a is yes, please provide a copy of any contract terms on using the data by the provider company including
a) the data items feedling analytics, any profiling, and/or used in prediction
b) what the prediction purposes / aims are
c) training the software (such as AI and machine learning) by the provider using the data provided via your organisation.

4. Whether the University is using its own student or staff population data for machine learning for purposes not included in 1-3 above? (ie but not only, within the university computing department for any project or with another third-party)

5. From which time periods were the student or staff data collected which are processed in any of the above (ie not only, retrospective student data from the last ten years / only current intake which began in autumn term 2018)?

6. How many people/user accounts have access to the whole population student data in any of the above in this calendar year?

Thank you for your consideration.
Sincerely,

Jen Persson

Freedom of Information, University of Sussex

1 Atodiad

Dear Ms Persson,

 

Thank you for your correspondence received on 28 November 2018.

 

Your request will be dealt with under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
and will be answered as soon as possible and within twenty working days
following the date of receipt, i.e. by 21 December 2018.

 

If you need to contact us about your request please quote your reference
number FOI-18-0277.

 

Kind regards,

 

Information Management Team

University of Sussex, Sussex House, Brighton BN1 9RH

 

[1]cid:image001.png@01D335FF.FB69BDA0

 

 

 

 

References

Visible links

Freedom of Information, University of Sussex

2 Atodiad

Dear Ms Persson,

 

Please find attached the University’s formal response to your recent
Freedom of Information request.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Lucy Pattenden

Information Officer

University of Sussex, Sussex House, Brighton BN1 9RH

 

 

Dear University of Sussex,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of University of Sussex's handling of my FOI request 'Student and staff data: use of data analytics and machine learning'.

It is our understanding that the University uses Canvas: http://blogs.sussex.ac.uk/tel/2018/02/02... and that this tool generates data analytics using student personal data. https://www.sussex.ac.uk/webteam/gateway...

We therefore ask for a review of the FOI and that you update the information accordingly, on use, number of users with access to all student data, and other associated information, since the response indicated for all answers 'no' and no information was provided.

Many thanks.
Sincerely,

Jen Persson

Freedom of Information, University of Sussex

Dear Ms Persson,

 

Thank you for your email dated 23 January 2019 concerning our response to
FOI-18-0277 under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. 

 

The University is handling your email as a request for an internal review
of our original response of 11 December 2018.  In accordance with guidance
from the Information Commissioner, we will respond within 20 further
working days following the date of receipt of your request, i.e. by 20
February 2019. 

 

Please find below the updated link for the University’s Freedom of
Information internal review procedure:

[1]http://www.sussex.ac.uk/ogs/policies/inf...

 

If you need to contact us about your request please quote your reference
numbers FOI-18-0277.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Information Management Team

University of Sussex, Sussex House, Brighton BN1 9RH

 

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Alex Elliott, University of Sussex

1 Atodiad

Dear Ms Persson,

 

Please find attached correspondence in relation to your request for an
internal review.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Alexandra Elliott (Miss)

Head of Information Management and Compliance

University of Sussex

01273 678472

[1][email address]

 

Please note my working days are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday.

 

 

dangos adrannau a ddyfynnir

Dear Alex Elliott,

With regards to the use of IBM Cognos, known as "Cognos Analytics" ref: https://www.ibm.com/uk-en/products/cogno... please can you provide information.

1. a)Whether the University is processing its own student or staff population data with this software?
a) If yes, how many individuals' data is currently processed with it? (split staff / students please)
b) list which data items are processed ie; name, DOB, ethnicity, etc
c) what date this processing began?

2. From which time periods were the student or staff data collected which are processed in any of the above (ie not only, retrospective student data from the last ten years / only current intake which began in autumn term 2018)?

3. a) How many people/user accounts have access to the whole population student data in any of the above in this calendar year?

4. Please provide a copy of any contract terms on using the data by the provider company including but not only
a) any data transfers
b) what the processing purposes / aims are
c) training the software (such as AI and machine learning) by the provider using the data provided via your organisation.

Thank you for your consideration.
Sincerely,

Jen Persson

Freedom of Information, University of Sussex

1 Atodiad

Dear Ms Persson,

 

Thank you for your correspondence to Miss Elliott received on 13 March
2019.

 

Your email will be dealt with as a new request under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 and will be answered as soon as possible and within
twenty working days following the date of receipt, i.e. by 10 April 2019.

 

If you need to contact us about your request please quote your reference
number FOI-19-0082.

 

Kind regards,

 

Information Management Team

University of Sussex, Sussex House, Brighton BN1 9RH

 

[1]cid:image001.png@01D335FF.FB69BDA0

 

 

 

References

Visible links

Freedom of Information, University of Sussex

2 Atodiad

Dear Ms Persson,

 

Please find attached the University’s formal response to your recent
Freedom of Information request.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Lucy Pattenden

Information Officer

University of Sussex, Sussex House, Brighton BN1 9RH