This privacy statement provides transparency in how the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) collects, holds, uses, discloses and protects your personal information. It does not limit or exclude any of your rights under the Privacy Act 2020 (the Act).

Personal information

Personal information is information about an identifiable individual (a natural person) and includes, in relation to NZQA’s role, information relating to:

  • National Student Numbers (NSNs)
  • dates of birth
  • home addresses
  • institutions attended by students
  • enrolments
  • achievement data
  • gender
  • ethnicity
  • disabilities and
  • employment information (if you are an NZQA staff member or contractor).

Why do we collect personal information?

We collect and use your personal information for the purpose of providing you with the services you have requested or authorised, and for particular purposes specified at the point of collection.

We may also collect and use your personal information to:

  • respond to any questions or correspondence from you
  • eliminate the need for you to repeatedly provide us with the same information
  • send you information about a service you are using, or
  • verify your identity.

From time-to-time the information we collect may also be used for training, and/or research, purposes to improve our services.

Access and correction

You have access to your personal information that we hold unless an exception in the Act applies. You can access some information, such as that on your Record of Achievement, by creating and using a learner login.

If your information is wrong, please ask us to correct it.

To ask for access and correction, contact the NZQA Privacy Officer.

For your contact details on your Record of Achievement, you can update those yourself when you login.

If you are on an NZQA mailing list and wish to be removed, please contact the sender of the email.

How do we collect your personal information?

When you interact with NZQA (e.g. face-to-face, by telephone, email, using our Chatbot, writing to us, making an application for our services or completing forms on our websites) we will collect information directly from you.

If you are a student, some of your personal information is accessible by NZQA from the Ministry of Education, secondary schools, and tertiary education organisations. This accessibility enables NZQA to undertake its statutory functions and provide services to you.

Use and disclosure of personal information

NZQA may use and disclose your personal information for the purposes for which you provided it, or with your permission.

There are exceptions such as those under Principles 10 and 11 of the Privacy Act or under other laws.

Common exceptions are:

  • following up your complaints or queries, or other directly related purposes
  • statistical or research purposes where you are not identified
  • avoiding prejudice to the maintenance of the law (including in relation to offences)
  • where we are required by a law, a Court, or a Tribunal.

Where NZQA has called for public submissions on a matter, such as where NZQA issues public consultation documents on rule changes, the consultation document will set out publication information for the submissions. If the document does not set out publication information, access to your submission will be governed by the Official Information Act.

NZQA may use your information to contact you to ask for feedback on the services it has provided to you. We welcome your feedback. It is your choice as to whether you wish to provide feedback.

Security of personal information

We will take all reasonable precautions to protect personal information from misuse, loss, unauthorised access, or disclosure.

Some of the ways we protect your personal information include:

  • external and internal premises security
  • storing your information on access-controlled systems
  • restricting access to your personal information to staff who need it to perform their day-to-day functions
  • ongoing auditing of our use of personal information, and
  • providing training on the Privacy Act to our staff.

Storage and retention of personal information

We use third party providers to store and process our information, including the use of electronic analytical tools for processing, to inform decision making, and to improve the ways in which we support our customers.

This means that some personal information we hold may be transferred to, or accessed from, countries other than New Zealand.

Where personal information needs to be stored with or disclosed to organisations in other countries NZQA will comply with Privacy Principle 12. This involves seeking to ensure that there will be similar protections to those in the New Zealand Privacy Act 2020.

However, where NZQA is unable to ensure this, NZQA will ensure the individual whose information is being stored or disclosed is aware of the potential risk by informing them that that their information may not be given the same protection. If the individual is not happy with that offshore storage or disclosure the individual will be able to withdraw from being provided the service involved.

The information is kept until it is no longer needed for the purposes for which it was held.

Personal information and the NZQA website

You may access and browse our website without providing any personal information.

On some places on the website, you can voluntarily provide personal information, such as emailing an enquiry to one of our service units, making a submission to a consultation document, making a complaint, or registering or logging into NZQA’s secure services (such as the Learner portal).

If you choose not to provide the required information, you will not be able to access the secure services.

The National Student Number (NSN)

The National Student Number (NSN) is a unique number given to every student.

The NSN makes it easier for authorised users such as schools, tertiary education organisations, the Ministry of Education and NZQA to manage and share information about individual students in a way that protects their privacy.

NZQA uses the NSN to:

  • manage student entry to external assessments, including online examinations
  • link records of credits and qualifications awarded (the Record of Achievement) to a specific student in our database
  • verify your identity when you register to use our Learner portal.

Under NZQA’s current approved Retention and Disposal Schedule student results (Record of Achievement) are held by NZQA permanently.

Use and disclosure of NSNs is regulated under sections 621, 649 and 661, and Schedule 24 of the Education and Training Act 2020, which in this case overrides the Privacy Principles for use and disclosure. Misusing the NSN is an offence with a penalty of up to $15,000 for conviction (section 661).

EU personal data

NZQA collects and processes data consistent with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Principles. EU personal data (which is largely the same as defined in the first section but also includes biometrics) may have been sourced directly from you or through your use of our services.

NZQA only collects and processes EU Personal data where we have a lawful basis to do so – this includes where users have given consent, and for NZQA’s legitimate interests to carry out the statutory and related operations, functions and activities required of it as a Crown Entity.

NZQA does not use automatic decision making such as profiling to make a decision that may produce a legal effect relating to EU Personal Data.

Where NZQA relies on your consent to process personal data, you may withdraw, restrict, or decline your consent at any time, except where the law requires otherwise and where we rely on legitimate interests. This is because some requirements under New Zealand law may conflict with your rights under the GDPR. If you object, we may note your objection.

If you have any concerns about our collection of information, please contact our Privacy Officer.

Important information

For any further explanations of what we do with your information, check the parts of the website where you can provide us with that information, or contact our Privacy Officer.

For information on the privacy laws of New Zealand, please visit the Privacy Commissioner’s website.

If you wish to make a complaint about NZQA gathering or use of your personal information please email us using the online Complaints Form or contact our Privacy Officer.


Cookies are small files placed on your computer to collect non-identifiable web traffic data (including your IP address and which pages have been visited) to help us improve our website and services.

Some of our secure services (those requiring you to log-in) use cookies to identify your login session during the time that you are using the service. This enables you to access various personalised functions, such as your enrolment and record of achievement details.

You can manually disable cookies at any time - check your browser’s ‘Help’ to find out how. This will not affect your ability to view the website, however you may have limited functionality in our secure services.

Statistical information - websites

We collect non-identifying statistical information about all visits to our websites. These statistics allow us to assess the number of visitors to different sections of our website, identify information of interest, monitor system performance, and help us make the website more useful to visitors.

Notice updated: February 2023

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