Who we are

This is the privacy statement of the Students’ Union, Queen Margaret University (QMUSU). QMUSU is a Data Controller in terms of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) and the General Data Protection Regulations.

We process personal information to enable us to provide education and support services to our students and staff; advertising and promoting the students’ Union and the services we offer; providing and supporting student activities, undertaking research and fundraising; managing our accounts and records and providing commercial activities to our clients.

All students at Queen Margaret University (QMU) are automatically members of QMUSU. Students can opt out of Students’ Union membership at any time by e-mailing QMUSU needs to process and retain certain personal information relating to you, because you are a student of the University and a member of the Students’ Union. All of your personal information will be treated in accordance with the terms of the DPA and the General Data Protection Regulation, which comes into effect on 25 May 2018. This means that confidentiality will be respected and that appropriate security measures will be taken to prevent unauthorised disclosure.

QMUSU and QMU have a data sharing agreement. QMU shares some of your data for purposes of academic representation, running of elections, administering clubs, societies and sports clubs and social marketing activities QMU is a data controller in its own right. You can read their privacy policy here.


How we collect your data

The personal data QMUSU holds about you is obtained from a variety of sources, including but not limited to:

  • Information shared under the terms of the data sharing agreement with QMU.
  • Information you provide to us when you register to use our website at
  • Information you provide to us when you take part in student activities including but not limited to becoming a class rep, attending an SU event, joining a sports team or society.
  • Information you provide to us when you receive support from the Helpzone.


Why we collect and use your personal information

This privacy statement explains how we collect and use personal information about you. When you accept your offer you enter into a contract with the University and agree to accept the University’s Terms and Conditions. As part of these terms and conditions you agree that the University can share your personal information with QMUSU. QMUSU then process your personal information for administrative, membership and educational purposes. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Supporting Student Representation processes.
  • Support student activities.
  • Processing financial transactions.
  • Providing advice and support to you, including personal support, academic appeal, complaints, disciplinaries and Fitness to Practice support.
  • To protect your vital interests e.g. in an emergency situation.
  • Contacting you by post, email or telephone.
  • Providing you with information about QMUSU events, opportunities and services.
  • Seeking feedback on QMUSU events, opportunities and services.
  • Alumni membership.
  • Statistical and archive purposes.
  • Preventing and detecting crime, fraud or corruption.


Special categories of personal information

QMUSU does not routinely collect special categories of personal information. Any information which is deemed to be sensitive would only be collected for a specific reason and with explicit consent. Situations where this may be the case include but are not limited to:

  • The provision of support from the HelpZone.
  • Submitting an insurance claim for a sports team or society member.

Special categories of personal information are afforded an extra level of security and confidentiality. This includes information about racial or ethnic origin, religious or philosophical beliefs, or trade union membership, data concerning disability, physical or mental health, data concerning sexual life or sexual orientation and data relating to criminal offences, convictions and sentences.


Access to your personal information

QMUSU will manage your information securely and will restrict access to only those who need to use it in the course of their duties. QMUSU will put in place technical and organisational measures necessary to ensure the security of your information.

QMUSU will only disclose your information to third parties where we:

  • Have a legal basis to do so under the General Data Protection Regulation; or
  • Are required to under a statutory or regulatory obligation; or
  • Have your consent.


Sharing your personal data

To fulfil our statutory or legal obligations your data may be provided, without your explicit consent, to organisations or agents acting on their behalf including but not limited to:

To meet statutory and legal obligations

  • Home Office/UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).
  • HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).
  • Local authority for Council Tax exemption purposes.
  • Embassies and other Governments.
  • Law enforcement agencies and debt controllers.
  • Potential employers or education and placement providers.
  • Relevant authorities dealing with emergency situations at QMUSU or one of their external events.

International data transfer

QMUSU may need to process your personal information in a country other than the one you are studying in, when this is necessary to provide you with appropriate events, opportunities or services, meet a legal obligation, fulfil a contract with you, or where we have your consent.

Personal data may be transferred outside the European Union, to countries which may not have equivalent data protection laws. Examples of circumstances when personal data may be transferred outside the EU include:

  • Working with external providers for web based services such as website hosting, online membership services, ticket sales or online forms.
  • Information posted on our website which is accessible outside the EEA.
  • Some of the systems and services the University and QMUSU  uses to store data in the Cloud which may include storage facilities based outside the EEA.


Personal information processed by consent

Where the processing of personal information falls outwith the scope of your membership of QMUSU then we will require another legal reason to process your data. This may require us to ask for your consent for processing. Consent will be sought when it is required.  


Profiling or automated decision making

We do not use profiling or automated decision-making processes.


Events, Activities and Publicity

QMUSU runs a range of events, many of them in public spaces. Audio and visual images of events and activities may be made publically available on the Internet. Should you not wish to be included in this you should e-mail in advance or speak to a member of the SU team at the event/activity.

QMUSU often takes photographs and other images which are shared on official social media used in publicity and promotional material. Students who do not wish to be included must e-mail in advance or inform the photographer at the time the photograph is taken. 

Students who wish a photograph to be removed from social media or the QMUSU website should contact


Retention of your personal information

QMUSU will retain your personal data only as long as necessary for its purposes as described. Please note, however, that even after termination of your student relationship with the University, QMUSU may still need to retain your personal data to satisfy its obligations to keep certain records for particular periods under applicable law.


Your rights relating to your personal information

You have the right to: 

  • Find out what personal data we process about you and obtain a copy of the data, free of charge within one month of your request. We may make a charge for additional copies of the same information.
  • Ask us to correct inaccurate or incomplete data.

If you think we are acting unfairly or unlawfully you can: 

Under certain conditions you also have the right to ask us to:

  • Restrict the use of your data e.g. if you have raised issues about the accuracy or use of your personal data, until we have investigated and responded to your concerns.
  • Erase your information or tell us to stop using it to make decisions about you.
  • Comply with your wishes where you have previously agreed to us processing your data for a particular purpose and have withdrawn your consent to further processing.


Data Protection contact details and further information

We will publish any changes we make to this data protection policy on our website (

If you are not happy to agree to the processing of your personal information as described above please contact the General Manager of the Students’ Union.

You can do this by email:; telephone: 0131 474 0000 or post:


The General Manager

The Students’ Union

Queen Margaret University

Queen Margaret University Drive


EH21 6UU


If you have any issues about this statement or the way QMUSU has handled your personal information please contact the General Manager in the first instance. If you are dissatisfied with the response from QMUSU you have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner’s Office:


Information Commissioner’s Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane





telephone: 0303 123 1113




Registered address: The Students' Union, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, EH21 6UU              

Telephone: 0131 474 0000