Trust, Comfort, and Concerns: College Students’ Views of Data Privacy

Wednesday, October 27 | 1:15PM–2:00PM ET
Viewing Location: Online
Session Type: Breakout Session
Delivery Format: Presentation/Panel Session
This session will be recorded for later viewing
Universities and third-party vendors have access to more student data than ever before. Data points include the more traditional, such as grades, disciplinary records, and demographic data, but may also expand to newer types of data from learning management systems, social media data, and location data. Institutions of higher education are using these data to improve student outcomes, provide support, enforce social distancing, and more. But how aware of and comfortable are students with the different types of data collection and use by their institutions of higher education? The Future of Privacy Forum surveyed roughly 1,500 college students and conducted 16 interviews to learn of the concerns college students have regarding the data practices of their colleges and universities. The results show significant differences in comfort levels between the types of data being collected and the purposes the data is being used for. There are also important differences in comfort levels of data collection and use by demographic groups, including by race, gender, sexual identity, and disability status. This session will include a brief presentation on the findings of the survey, focusing on where differences lie between data types and data purposes, and by demographic groups. The presentation will be followed by a discussion among academics and practitioners on what we know about students' views on data privacy, and what this means for institutions of higher education.


  • Juliana Cotto

    Policy Counsel, Future of Privacy Forum
  • Claire Fontaine

    Consultant, CMF Advisors LLC
  • Kyle Jones

    Assistant Professor, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)
  • Pegah Parsi

    Chief Privacy Officer, University of California San Diego