Data Protection for the LINC Programme – Overview

As an employer of a LINC nominee, a LINC nominee or a LINC student, former LINC student or graduate, some of your personal data will be processed by the LINC Consortium (Mary Immaculate College, Early Childhood Ireland and Maynooth University – Froebel Department of Primary and Early Childhood Education).

In particular, data is held by Mary Immaculate College (MIC) and Early Childhood Ireland (ECI) on behalf of the LINC Consortium.

Mary Immaculate College (MIC)

Further information on MIC’s data protection policies and procedures is available at: https://www.mic.ul.ie/about-mic/information-compliance

In particular, LINC applicants and students are asked to be aware of the HEA Data Collection Notice, which outlines the collection and usage of certain data and it is available to view here: https://www.mic.ul.ie/sites/default/files/uploads/461/2021-2022%20HEA%20Data%20Collection%20Notice.pdf

Early Childhood Ireland(ECI)

Further information on ECI’s data protection policy is available at: https://www.earlychildhoodireland.ie/privacy/

Collection of Data

 The data is collected during the application period for LINC annually when employers nominate applicants for LINC. Following the application period, further information may be collected from students directly during the enrolment and registration with Mary Immaculate College. Further information is added during your studies.

Personal information held by MIC or ECI on behalf of the LINC Consortium is treated with the highest standards of security and confidentiality in accordance with data protection legislation.

This information will only be used for this purpose and will be kept no longer than is necessary. Further information on retention of documents is available at: https://www.mic.ul.ie/sites/default/files/uploads/2014/MIC%20Records%20Retention%20Schedule.pdf

The GDPR came into force on 25 May 2018, replacing the existing data protection framework under the EU Data Protection Directive.

Data Protection is the means by which the privacy rights of individuals are safeguarded in relation to the processing of their personal data. The Data Protection Acts and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) confer rights on individuals as well as placing responsibilities on those persons processing personal data.

Under the GDPR you have the right to be given a copy, clearly explained, of any of your personal data kept on computer or manual relevant filing systems simply by making a written request.  If you wish to access your personal data held by MIC please complete the Subject Access Request (SAR) form and submit to the Information Compliance Manager, Mary Immaculate College or Dataprotection@mic.ul.ie.


What information do we collect about you?

The type of personal data processed by the LINC Consortium include, inter alia:

  • Student ID number
  • Names, date of birth, nationality, gender
  • Addresses, email addresses
  • Phone numbers
  • PPS Number
  • Employer (i.e. nominating setting) details including pobal number, address, email address, phone number, manager name and role
  • Role title
  • Highest previous qualification
  • Last educational institute attended and years
  • Relevant Early Years’ qualification, details of qualification such as award title, year and institute and image of certificate provided
  • Your bank account details
  • Image of your photograph and signature for provision of student ID card
  • Academic marks and history
  • Attendance records
  • Qualifications awarded
  • Engagement with relevant systems (e.g. Moodle, Office 365)
  • Health and Disability information
  • Disciplinary information


How do we use the information about you?

  • To check your eligibility on application to the LINC Programme
  • To administer your studies, record achievement and determine your award outcome and to calculate awards that may be due to you including keeping a permanent record of your achievements in order to verify awards and achievements
  • To support you in your studies (e.g. with information you have given us about a disability in order to provide you with appropriate support, or with information on systems to identify students who may need assistance)
  • To pay a bursary to you as part of the LINC Programme or to collect fees (e.g. if you need to repeat (a) module(s)).
  • To enable communication with you
  • To evaluate the LINC Programme and its impact including by circulating voluntary surveys and invitations to take part in research.
  • To identify you and allow you to access certain resources (e.g. Moodle, Office365, library)
  • To comply with reporting requirements, including reporting to the Higher Education Authority (HEA), Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEIDY), and Pobal.
  • To produce reports and statistics for the ongoing management of and delivery of the LINC Programme, both for LINC Consortium and for Government, Departments and agencies.
  • For other purposes where required by law
  • To respond to requests under data protection legislation
  • With specific permission, to use photographs and extracts in publications and publicity material both in print and online.
  • To notify you of other services and events related to your studies, including continuing professional development opportunities.


Who do we share your data with?

The LINC Consortium commits to maintaining your data securely and safely. However, there are a number of statutory and contractual requirements for sharing of your data including with:

  • Higher Education Authority (HEA) – see full HEA Collection notice, linked above.
  • Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEIDY) and Pobal (e.g. to manage progression within the programme, to claim fees on behalf of students and to transfer details of students at the end of the programme so that they can be registered for additional capitation “INCO Capitation” purposes.)
  • Companies managing specific processes for LINC (e.g. print company for mailshots, email company for bulk email shots, IT companies for student services (email, word processing software))
  • External Examiners as part of their quality assurance role
  • Other agencies where required by law
  • Others where there is a legitimate reason to do so and only in accordance with law