Wiltshire College
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cookiesWiltshire College is very aware of the trust you place in us and of our responsibility to protect your privacy. As part of this responsibility, we let you know what information we collect using cookies when you use our websites, why we collect it and how we use it to improve your experience.

Cookies: What Are They And What Do They Do?

A cookie is a small text file containing a string of characters that is sent to your computer when you visit a website. Often you will not even be aware that this has happened. When you return to that website, the cookie then allows that site to recognize your browser. Cookies may also store user preferences and other information and be used to gather anonymous analytics that helps organisations improve their websites based on how their visitors use them.

There are two kinds of cookie – session cookies and permanent or persistent cookies. Session cookies are created when you login to a machine and exist only while you are logged in. When you close the browser, the cookie is destroyed. Persistent cookies stay permanently on your machine to identify you, and aid your usage of the site, although for safety they do expire after a set period of time.

You can reset your browser to refuse all cookies or to indicate when a cookie is being sent, however some features or services provided on websites may not function properly without cookies. 

How to control cookies

Concerns About Cookies

While there are many legitimate uses for cookies to enhance convenience and efficiency, some uses of cookies can pose privacy issues. These concerns typically emerge when a cookie is linked to or used to hold personal information identifying you (e.g. a person's name, e-mail address, billing information or address) used across multiple sites to track users and internet usage. Wiltshire College does not use this type of cookie.

Cookies can be first-party (set by and only working with the website you are visiting) or third-party (set/originating from a different site, i.e. set by an advertising banner and shared across sites).  It is important to note, therefore, that the real privacy issue is not in the type of cookie or the way it is used but rather what information is gathered and how it is used. Browsers do not share first-party cookies across domains, unlike third-party domains.

We only use first-party cookies to track visitor interactions and we do not collect any personal information.

Cookies and the Law

On the 26th of May 2012, a new piece of EU legislation called the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) (Amendment) Regulations 2011, also known as PECR, comes fully into force. Any EU-based organisation which uses cookies on its website is expected to comply with the new regulations.

Organisations like ours are asked to request your consent to using cookies when you visit our site. The only exceptions are indicated below:

Regulation 6 states:

There is an exception to the requirement to provide information about cookies and obtain consent where the use of the cookie is:

(a) …for the sole purpose of carrying out the transmission of a communication over an electronic communications network; or

(b) …where such storage or access is strictly necessary for the provision of an information society service requested by the subscriber or user.

What Cookies Do Wiltshire College Use?

We use a number of cookies on our website. Most are necessary for the operation of our website, for example to identify you when you visit eStudy, a cookie held on your machine inserts your username into the login box.  MyWiltscoll, our accessibility application which allows you to customise the look-and-feel of our pages also saves those settings in a cookie. A further example is our Shopping Basket, where data is temporarily held in a cookie during your transaction.

These examples are applications where you are requesting a service from us, and ones where, without cookies, would not work correctly, and therefore we reasonably consider to be exempted from the requirement to request consent from you.  

However we also use cookies to gather anonymous usage statistics using an application called Google Analytics, which helps analyse data about webpage traffic and improve our website in order to better tailor it to your needs, and for this we specifically need your consent.

We have listed the cookies we use, and the purpose to which they are put in the table below.

Cookies used by Wiltshire College

 Cookie Purpose More information

Google Analytics

These cookies are used to collect information about how visitors use our site. We use the information to compile reports and to help us improve the site. The cookies collect visitor information, such as the number of visitors to our sites, where those visitors have come from and the pages they visit. This data collection is always anonymous.

Google Analytics do not collect any personal information as identified in their privacy policy

Shopping Cart

Our shopping cart for part-time courses holds product and price information in a cookie which expires after 7 days and is essential for the proper operation of the application.

Exempted under Regulation 6(b)


Your Login ID held in a persistent cookie. This is a service which requires the user to request it and cookies are strictly necessary for its operation.

Exempted under Regulation 6(b)


A persistent cookie holds the login ID and Station ID for each user so the user is required only to enter their password at logon.

Exempted under Regulation 6(a)

eStudy  (Moodle)

Moodle uses a session cookie which is essential for the proper operation of the website. This cookie is destroyed when the browser is closed and recreated when you log in again.

Moodle also uses a persistent cookie to retain your login between sessions and contains only your login ID.

Exempted under Regulation 6(b)



This cookie is used by our PECR preferences script to hold our users’ Google Analytics preferences. It contains only a yes/no marker. This is either a session cookie or a persistent cookie dependent on the user’s preference.

Exempted under Regulation 6(b)

Where Can I Find Out More About Cookies?

For further information about cookies and their uses visit All About Cookies.

For information regarding the updated law on cookies visit the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

Further information

To see the Wiltshire College Data Protection Policy in full, click here.

For further details about the Learning & Skills Council's use of student personal data, please visit the LSC website at www.lsc.gov.uk.

Any questions?

If you have any queries about or suggestions for this statement, or have any concerns about the use of your personal details by Wiltshire College, please contact the Director of Information Services at the address below.

Wiltshire College
College Road
Wiltshire BA14 0ES

Telephone: 01225 766241
Fax: 01225 756400
Minicom: 01225 756364

Email: dataprivacy@wiltshire.ac.uk
Web: www.wiltshire.ac.uk

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