Why are some teaching sessions recorded?

In order to improve the student experience of teaching sessions being delivered online, and to provide an educationally valuable resource to students, NUI Galway may in accordance with University guidance and where there is a recognised benefit in doing so record an online teaching session, may live stream a session, and may also post it to a lecture capture portal (such as Blackboard, Blackboard Collaborate, Kaltura, echo360, or other where applicable). Lecturers sometimes put links to these recordings on the relevant page of the virtual learning environment. The recorded lecture is made and posted up to enable absent students to access the teaching session, students who attended to re-visit the session and lecturers to reflect on the teaching session and plan future teaching sessions accordingly. Depending on how the teaching session is delivered this may include the recording of audio or video of the lecturers and / or students. Occasionally, short excerpts of recordings may be used within the University to demonstrate good technological / pedagogical practice or provide feedback to lecturers who wish to improve or enhance their teaching practice.

How do I know if my teaching session is being recorded?

It should be clearly advised at the start of each session by the person giving the session if the session is being recorded so as to enable the participants to make personal choices with regard to their involvement in the recording.

If you are being taught on campus you will know if the teaching session is being recorded by the University as the lecturer will advise in advance of same, and in some venues the green light in the venue will be lit up. If the green light is on a recording is taking place. If the green light is off, the system is not recording the session.

If the teaching session is happening online i.e. via Microsoft Teams, Blackboard Collaborate, or other online platform you will know if it is being recorded as a red circle and the red text ‘Recording’ or a similar label/icon/notice will show on your computer screen.

Students should not make their own recordings (unless they have explicit written permission to the contrary) from their computer/device as personal data recordings need to be controlled by the University to protect the rights of other students and staff.

Are teaching session recordings considered personal data? 

Parts of recordings could count as personal data according to data protection laws. Personal data in recordings would include your name, images of you and any opinions you contribute and anything you say about yourself.

Special categories of personal data is personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade union membership, genetic data and biometric data processed for the purpose of uniquely identifying a natural person. Lecturers will take extra measures to ensure the security of a session if recording sessions where expressions of opinions containing special categories of personal data are likely to be recorded. The measures required will be assessed on a case-by-case basis but may include, for example:

  • an explicit agreement that students will not attempt to download the recording, share it or edit it in any way;
  • a spoken reminder of students’ privacy rights prior to a discussion in which special category data is likely to be discussed;
  • the lecturer may decide to stop the recording for the duration of a discussion involving special category data;
  • the lecturer may decide not to upload the recording, or portion of the recording, in which special category data is discussed.

Under data protection legislation you have rights in respect of your personal data. See: Data subject rights.

What is the lawful basis of processing personal data in the recorded lecture?

The lawful basis for processing this personal data is primarily legitimate interests as set out in Article 6 and recital 47 of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Legitimate interests applies when:

  • the data processing is not required by law or other legal basis but is of a clear benefit to the University or the student based on the relationship between the University and the student;
  • there is limited privacy impact on the student;
  • the individual and the University would reasonably expect the University to use the personal data in the way that the University wishes to.

In cases where the recording forms a necessary obligatory part of your course for example a practical assessment then the legal basis for processing will be performance of a contract.

Lecturers do not need to ask permission to record the lecture, either on campus or if being delivered online but must advise participants in advance of the recording so as to enable participants to make the choices set out in this privacy notice.

Recordings cannot subsequently be used, without consent, for purposes that are incompatible with those for which they were made.

Special categories of personal data is processed on the basis of legitimate interest and on the basis of article 9(j) of the General Data Protection Regulation 2016.

Can I opt-out of having my personal data recorded during teaching sessions?

If the teaching is happening in person and a student does not want to be recorded the student can make sure that the student is not in view of the video camera and the student can choose not to speak during that session.

If the teaching session is taking place online a student can mute their microphone or turn off their webcam. The University values each student’s contribution to the sessions, but a student is entitled to exercise their rights unless the session is being recorded for assessment purposes and the student’s contribution is being assessed.

How are the recordings stored and shared?

When teaching sessions are being delivered online, lecturers will work on a University-supplied device (e.g. Lectern PC, laptop, tablet) where possible. In some circumstances, lecturers may be required to use a personal device in which case further security measures should be implemented to ensure the device meets the University’s ICT policies and procedures.

The recordings will be uploaded to Kaltura or Blackboard normally or transferred to the University network. Once they are on Kaltura or Blackboard Collaborate or other approved platform or the University network they should be saved or archived to OneDrive or other University approved system and deleted from devices.

NUI Galway has a contract in place with its third-party processors to protect your data. The recordings will normally be stored and posted on the relevant virtual learning environment page for the rest of the academic year plus normally a maximum of three academic years. The recording is then permanently deleted. The recordings will be accessible to relevant staff and relevant students only and should not normally be shared outside of the University. Where the recordings are downloadable from the Blackboard, or other third party solution provider, platform, students must not share, publish or edit in any way, make derivatives of, or use for any other purpose than the course of study involved and a student must delete all downloaded lectures at the end of the examination period for the lecture in question. The lectures will normally remain on the University site for a minimum of the academic year that you are in, and normally a maximum of three years depending on the system for your access.

The University may where there is a specific lawful request based on a specific investigation share the recordings with the An Garda Síochána and other law enforcement agencies, for the prevention or detection of crime.

Where recordings contain special categories of personal data then extra consideration and attention must be given as regards to where and how such data is shared and what access is permitted to such data. The sharing and access to such data should be restricted/limited to those who require having access to it.

Where can I get more information on data protection?

NUI Galway’s Data Protection Policy is available on the website.

The Data Protection Commission’s Office is the regulatory body for data protection. You can read about your data protection rights such as access to or where applicable in accordance with University policy and procedure erasure of personal data at on the Data Protection Commissioner’s Website Data Protection Commission website and also, in the NUI Galway Student Data Usage Policy

You have the right to lodge a complaint with the Data Protection Commissioners Office about the handling of your personal data and can find out more about this on their website Data Protection Commission website

“To raise and enhance your Data Protection awareness, we invite all Students and Staff to complete our GDPR training which is available on Blackboard. Find out how to access this and other Data Protection related training here:

Students should have regard to: https://www.nuigalway.ie/media/corporateandlegalaffairs/images/Privacy-Notice-for-Recording-of-Lectures-by-NUI-Galway.pdf"