Policies & Procedures

Privacy Policy

If you require any more information or have any questions about our Privacy Policy, please contact us by email at privacy@groklearning.com.

We consider the privacy of our users to be extremely important. This Privacy Policy describes in detail the types of personal information that is collected and stored by Grok Learning, and how we use that information.

This Privacy Policy is effective as of May 25, 2018 and should be read in conjunction with our Terms of Use.

1. Personal Information

Grok Learning collects and stores Personal Information relevant to the creation and management of Registered User accounts. Registered Users are described in our Terms of Use.

1.1. What Personal Information we collect and why

Full name

We collect your first and last name and nickname so we can:

  • address you in communications;
  • help teachers (and sometimes other students) at your institution identify you; and
  • award certificates of achievement in your name.

You can update your name in your account settings under Account Details.

Email addresses

We collect your email address(es) so:

  • you can login to your account with a unique identifier; and
  • we can notify you of important information (e.g. password reset emails or policy updates).

If we ever send you marketing information by email, we will ensure you have the option to opt-out from future communications.

You can change the email address(es) we send information to and your marketing email preferences in your Account Settings under Communication.


You can optionally specify your gender as female, male, or other. You can change your gender in your account settings under Account Details.

Your gender will never be displayed, and is only aggregated for statistical analysis to ensure that our Grok Learning technology and content is equally effective for everyone.

Country of residence

We store your country of residence for determining your Age of Consent (as defined in our Terms of Use) and recording with your consent to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. We will also use your country of residence for aggregated statistical analysis.

You can change your country of residence in your account settings under Account Details.


We link you to your Institution(s) (school, university, etc) so we can determine which:

  • content to make available to you;
  • teachers and/or other students should have access to your Personal Information;
  • teachers should have access to your course progress and marks.

Teachers can be verified as working at one or more Institutions (a “Verified Teacher”) as defined in our Terms of Use.

We link you to your Institution(s) so that your Verified Teachers can:

  • create and manage their students’ Registered User accounts;
  • address their students in communications;
  • access the course progress and submissions of their students;
  • export the course progress and marks of their students.

It also allows Grok Learning staff to help Verified Teachers manage their students in the Platform.

Depending on the policies of your Institution(s), you can join or leave your Institution(s) in your account settings under Institutions.

Teachers can also request verification for their Institutions on this page.

School Year

Your School Year is the school year or grade you are currently in (e.g. Year 10 or Grade 5). It only applies to students enrolled at schools, homeschools and some colleges.

Your School Year is visible to your Verified Teachers and helps them to manage your learning and what content is recommended to you.

Students schools may qualify for free access to some content in the Platform, developed by us or our partners, depending on their School Year and nature and/or location of their Institution.

IP address

We use your IP address to help us geolocate you, so that we can comply with relevant privacy regulations. We log your IP address and the date and time you logged in for security purposes.

Personal identifiers

Grok Learning may integrate with identity and authentication services provided by your Institution(s) that share your Personal Information with us. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Single Sign-On (SSO) authentication services, e.g. OAuth or SAML2; and
  • Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) services.

For these services, we must store non-email unique personal identifiers. Depending on how these identifiers are configured for your Institution(s), they may include your Personal Information.

1.2. Where we collect your Personal Information

Your Personal Information can be provided by you, or may be provided by someone on your behalf, such as a parent or guardian, or Teacher at your Institutions.

When you register yourself or are registered by a parent or guardian

We collect your full name, email address, and country of residence.

When you are registered by a Teacher at an Institution

We collect your full name, nickname, email address, and gender (if available). We also collect the registering Institution name and your School Year (where applicable).

We set your country of residence to the country of the registering Institution.

When you log in

Each time you log in or access the site when you are logged in, we store your IP address, the date and time you logged in, and that it was you that logged in.

When you update your account settings

We store any Personal Information you provide via your account settings.

1.3. How long we keep your Personal Information

We store your Personal Information as detailed above until:

  1. You delete your account at which point your account is deactivated and all Personal Information is erased. You can delete your account in account settings under Delete Account. Deleted accounts cannot be recovered; or
  2. Your account expires at which point we erase or obfuscate all Personal Information. Unless you reactivate your account, your expired account is not identifiable in any way. We expire all accounts that have been inactive for more than 18 months; or
  3. Your Institution deletes your account through our data synchronisation with the Institution (see Data Synchronisation below).

1.4. Who we share your Personal Information with

We will only share your Personal Information with your linked Institutions, unless we have your Consent to share your Personal Information with another organisation.

For example, Grok Learning may provide content on behalf of other organisations. In these cases, we will make it clear that by using this content, you consent to us sharing your Personal Information with these organisations.

See the Sharing Information section below for further details.

1.5. What you can do about it

You can delete your account in your account settings under Delete Account or edit your account settings at any time to add, update, or remove Personal Information from your account, except if your account is synchronised with an external Institution (see Data Synchronisation below).

In accordance with your right to be forgotten, account deletion erases all of your Personal Information and it cannot be reversed.

2. Learning Data

We collect and store Learning Data from your interactions with our Platform. This includes:

  • information that you manually enter into the learning interface (e.g. code submissions);
  • data generated by your actions (e.g. changing slides or running examples); and
  • data created automatically by the Platform (e.g. the result of marking a code submission).

All of this data is collected to support and encourage you in your learning, give your Verified Teachers more information about your progress, and for Grok Learning to improve our learning technology and content in the Platform.

2.1. What Learning Data we collect and why


Every time you write code or provide other information to solve a problem (collectively, “Code”) in the Platform, we collect and store data associated with your learning, including, but not limited to:

  • Saved Code: we store your current Code when you click Save (or a synonym) or when the Platform automatically saves your current Code. The date and time is also stored.

We store your Saved Code so that if the browser is accidentally closed or you make changes that you do not want to keep, you can revert to a previous version of your Code. Saved Code is visible to you and your Verified Teachers in the learning interface.

  • Executed Code: we store Code that you execute to explore its behaviour when you click Run (or a synonym). We store which problem or example the Code is associated with, and the date and time when you executed it.

We also store any user input or other data entered while the Code was running, and if the Code terminated abnormally, any termination data.

We store your Executed Code to better understand your learning progress, both individually and aggregated for semantic and statistical analysis. Previously Executed Code is not currently visible to you and/or your Verified Teachers, but it may be in the future.

  • Submitted Code: we store Code that you submit for testing when you click Mark (or a synonym). We store which problem the Code is associated with, the date and time of the submission, and the number of submissions you have made for each problem.

We also store the response from our automated marking system, which may include whether your Code passed or failed a particular test case, the expected and actual behaviour of your Code, any further analysis or provided hints for your Code, and the number of points awarded.

We store your Submitted Code to give you and your Verified Teachers detailed information about your learning progress, and to aggregate in semantic and statistical analysis.

  • Tournament Code: we store Code that you submit to tournaments when you click Submit (or a synonym). We store which tournament the Code is associated with and the date and time of the submission. Your Code competes against the Tournament Code of other users and we store the outcome of each match.

We store your Tournament Code to enable matches against other users, and store match outcomes to score and rank your Tournament Code against other users.


We automatically collect and store data about your learning activities within the learning interface.

This may include, but is not limited to, which content in the learning interface you have viewed and how you have interacted with that content (e.g. running and modifying examples, or completing comprehension questions). Activities may also include the completion of particular problems, or sets of problems, within particular time limits or other constraints.

We may present this information to you in the learning interface, including as part of a gamification system, or as achievement or course completion badges.

Progress and Activity Summaries

We summarise your learning progress on the basis of (but not limited to) the Code and Activity data above. We may present this summary to you in views including, but not limited too, your Launchpad (or similar home view), the outline of each course, and within the learning interface.

We also present your Progress Summaries to Verified Teachers on their Teacher Dashboard. The Teacher Dashboard updates in realtime when you submit code to the automated marking system.

For some courses, we assign points to each problem and calculate a score for attempting or solving the problems. The calculation of the score is described in the course outline.

For each tournament, the outcomes of each match are used to calculate a score. The calculation of the score is described in the tournament outline.

In the case of competitions and tournaments, we may turn these scores into rankings and make those rankings available on leaderboards.

Tutoring Support

For some of our courses, Grok Learning, your Institution(s) or our Grok Learning partners, may provide tutor support, including tutor messaging within the learning interface or shared forums visible to all users enrolled in the course (see Tutoring Support below). Typically, tutor messaging and forums are directly tied to particular problems or modules within a course.

Your Institution(s) may restrict whether you can access tutor messaging or the forums.

We collect and store all of the posts you make and receive within the tutor messaging and forums. You can access these posts through the learning interface or the forums. These posts may also be visible to your Verified Teachers. This is both for your protection and the protection of the tutors.

Feedback to Grok Learning

From time to time, Grok Learning may solicit your feedback on aspects of our Platform, technology and content, either through user surveys or through ratings that you provide on individual content items (such as problems or slides). This may involve a mixture of quantitative and qualitative feedback which will be linked to your Registered User account.

We collect and store this information to improve the quality and effectiveness of our Platform, technology and content, understand how we can make your learning experience better, and ask for your ideas for future technology, courses and problems.

2.2. Where we collect Learning Data

We collect Learning Data as you interact with our content and technology in the learning interface, submit Code to problems or tournaments, make a post on tutor messaging or the forums, or when you complete a survey.

Some Learning Data is collected by manual entering, such as running or submitting Code and survey responses. Other Learning Data is collected automatically based on your activity or from the analysis of your Code. For example, our marking system provides results automatically, and any scores and ranks are calculated from those results.

2.3. How long we keep Learning Data

We keep your Learning Data indefinitely for aggregate semantic and statistical analysis purposes, for improving our platform, and for our own and partner research purposes.

Collecting and storing large-scale Learning Data allows us to test pedagogical techniques, identify concepts where we need to provide more learning support or simplify content, and problems that users find ambiguous or difficult.

Due to our Registered User expiry policy, your Personal Information will be removed or obfuscated after more than 18 months of inactivity, and so will be disconnected from your Learning Data.

2.4. Who we share your Learning Data with

Verified Teachers at your Institution(s) can see your Learning Data (as described above). Tutors can also see learning data for students who are enrolled in a course or competition with Tutoring Support (see below).

Depending on your account settings and the policies of your Institution(s), we may share your (anonymised) name, Institution, and School Year, and your score in a course or tournament on leaderboards that are visible to all users within that course or tournament.

For users who are not students (e.g. Teachers), we provide the option of sharing achievements to the social media sites Facebook and Twitter. Should you choose to do this, any information collected by these sites will be governed by the privacy policy of that service, as listed below:

2.5. What you can do about it

You can ask for your Saved Code in a course to be reset by contacting our support team at support@groklearning.com.

You can also delete your account in your account settings under Delete Account. Account deletion will anonymise your Learning Data so that it can’t be linked back to you.

Note: you should not include any Personal Information in your Learning Data.

The content in the Platform (especially the problems and surveys) and warnings in the tutor messaging and forums strongly discourage users from entering Personal Information in any freeform text (such as Code, user input to executing code, posts or survey responses). Our tutors are also trained to strongly discourage users from posting Personal Information.

Removing the Personal Information from later Code submissions will not remove it from your earlier Saved, Executed or Submitted Code. If you do inadvertently include Personal Information in your Learning Data, please contact our support team at support@groklearning.com to have it removed.

While we endeavour to remove Personal Information from Learning Data. However, Grok Learning takes no responsibility and accepts no liability, for removing or obfuscating Personal Information included in Learning Data.

3. Payment Data

When an individual or Institution completes a payment transaction with Grok Learning, we may collect additional information relevant to that transaction.

3.1. What Payment Data we collect and why

For individuals, we may collect and store the following data (including but not limited to):

  • Billing name of the payer of the transaction
  • PayPal transaction ID
  • Tax status

For Institutions, we may collect and store the following data (including but not limited to):

  • Name of the Institution
  • PayPal transaction ID
  • Tax status
  • Finance officer name and email address

We collect and store this information to render valid tax invoices and to facilitate following up the payment of invoices or refunding of payments.

Note: we do not collect or store any credit card information.

3.2. Where we collect Payment Data

We collect this information when you create an invoice, either when purchasing a single subscription, purchasing multiple subscriptions via our bulk subscription process, or purchasing a site licence.

3.3. How long we keep Payment Data

We keep a record of invoices indefinitely.

3.4. Who we share Payment Data with

The payment of invoices can optionally be done via PayPal. The use of PayPal to pay an invoice is governed by its own privacy policy: https://www.paypal.com/au/webapps/mpp/ua/privacy-full

All Grok Learning invoices are also sent to Xero, an online accounting system. This includes:

  • invoice payer details (explicitly entered billing details in the case of an individual, or the Institution name in the case of an Institution);
  • invoice amount;
  • summary line item descriptions;
  • taxation information.

In addition, if your Institution pays the invoice using electronic funds transfer (EFT), your Institution’s bank will send through transaction data that we store within Xero.

Xero's use of this data is governed by their privacy policy: https://www.xero.com/au/about/terms/privacy/

4. Web Traffic Data

Like many other platforms and websites, Grok Learning collects and stores web traffic data. Our web traffic log files record visits to Grok Learning websites and the actions performed by visitors – a standard procedure for maintaining security and the reliability of our service.

4.1. What Web Traffic Data we collect and why

The web log data we collect will at most be:

  • your IP address
  • the date and time you accessed the website
  • the URL you accessed on our website
  • the browser and operating system you used to access our website
  • the referring URL (the website that linked you to Grok Learning)
  • Log in events

This information is used to analyze trends, administer the site, track user's movement around the site, and gather demographic information. The browser and operating system information allows use to determine which browsers we should prioritise supporting and for how long.

4.2. Where we collect Web Traffic Data

We collect Web Traffic Data in log files on every page visit to Grok Learning websites.

4.3. How long we keep Web Traffic Data

We keep our Web Traffic log files for 14 days.

4.4. Who we share Web Traffic Data with

We don’t share your Web Traffic Data with anyone.

5. Support Data

When you contact our support services either through the widget available on our Platform or directly by email, we collect and store data related to your support request and our interaction.

We manage Support Data in Help Scout, the company that provides our email support platform. The management of the data sent to Help Scout is governed by their privacy policy: https://www.helpscout.net/company/legal/privacy/

5.1. What Support Data we collect and why

To enable us to respond to your support request, we collect:

  • your name;
  • your email address;
  • the contents of your message or email; and
  • the date and time of your message.

This is the same data that you typically provide to anyone when you send them an email.

5.2. Where we collect Support Data

Any emails sent to Grok Learning support addresses (e.g. support@groklearning.com) are stored in Help Scout with the data listed above.

Any messages sent to Grok Learning via the Help Scout beacon on our website are also stored in Help Scout with the data detailed above.

Help Scout also includes a record of previous email or message support interactions with you.

5.3. How long we keep Support Data

We keep a history of support emails indefinitely.

5.4. Who we share Support Data with

We don’t share your support data with anyone, except in the case where the query is best resolved by one of our partner organisations, in which case we will forward your message to the relevant party (see Partner Organisations below).

5.5. What you can do about it

If you would like us to delete your Support Data, please contact our support service at support@groklearning.com.

6. Cookies

"Cookies" are small pieces of information that can be placed on your device by a website in order to identify your web browser to that site.

The Grok Learning Platform uses cookies to relate your user account to your browser and browsing session.

Cookies are critical to enabling the functionality on our Platform. The functionality on the Grok Learning Platform will be unavailable if your browser is configured to reject cookies.

6.1. What Cookies we use and why

The specific cookies stored on your device are described in detail in our Cookies Policy.

At a high level, we use cookies to:

  • associate your account with your browser: If you are using an anonymous user account, the information in these cookies is the only way to access your existing course progress.

If you are a Registered User, these cookies store information you need to stay logged in.

  • simplify single sign on (SSO) access to the Platform by redirecting logged out Registered Users to the authentication service they used previously.
  • increase the security of our Platform by protecting against cross-site request forgeries.
  • track website visitors and their activity using Google Analytics.

6.2. Who we share our Cookies with

We don’t share Grok Learning cookies with anyone.

We use Google Analytics to aggregate site usage information across all visitors for the purposes of improving our customer service and marketing effectiveness.

Management of Google Analytics data is governed by the Google Privacy Policy: https://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/privacy.

Note: none of your Personal Information is shared with Google through Google Analytics.

6.3. What you can do about it

If you wish to disable cookies, you may do so through your individual browser options. More detailed information about cookie management with specific web browsers can be found at the browsers' respective websites.

However, it is not possible to use the features of our Platform without cookies enabled.

7. Sharing Information

Under limited circumstances, Grok Learning will share your data with other entities, specifically:

  • your Verified Teachers;
  • your Institutions and their systems (including online providers);
  • other Registered Users;
  • Grok Learning partners;
  • Grok Learning sponsors;
  • research organisations; and
  • the general public.

We share this data where the risk of sharing your data is small, and is substantially outweighed by the benefits to you and your Verified Teachers, and creates a better learning experience for you and/or for future students.

Each scenarios has been carefully considered, and where possible we anonymise and aggregate data before providing it to third parties. Some of these scenarios may not apply to you, depending on how you or your Institution(s) use Grok Learning.

Most of these scenarios and the corresponding shared data has been discussed earlier, but has been split across the types of data. This section focuses on the entities listed above.

7.1. Your Verified Teachers

If you are a student who belongs to one or more Institutions, we will share your Personal Information and Learning Data with all Verified Teachers at your Institution. A Verified Teacher was most likely responsible for creating your account in the first place.

Note: any Verified Teacher at your Institution can access your Personal Information and Learning Data.

Verified Teacher at your Institution(s) can see and update your Personal Information, including (but not limited to) your full name, email addresses, gender, country of residence and School Year. Some exceptions apply for Data Synchronisation (see below).

Verified Teachers at your Institution(s) may also have access to your Learning Data, including (but not limited to) your Saved and Submitted Code, your learning activity, summaries of progress and activity, Tutor Support data, and Feedback data, all via their Teacher Dashboard.

This is essential to allow Verified Teachers to manage their classes, record marks and monitor your learning progress.

If you are a Verified Teacher in an Institution then we will share your Personal Information with other Verified Teachers at your Institution. This allows teachers to manage the privacy of students, by controlling who can view student information on Grok Learning.

7.2. Your Institutions and their systems (including online providers)

We will share Personal Information and Learning Data with your Institution(s) and representatives of your Institution(s). In most instances, this will be Verified Teachers, but it may include authorised administrative and technical staff from your Institution(s). This may be required to confirm who is appropriately enrolled in a Grok Learning course (e.g. after a course census date).

We may share your Personal Information with your Institution(s) through integration with their identity provider. This will only be in the cases where they have provided your Personal Information to us in the first place through this identity provider. For instance, some identity provider protocols require us to confirm information we have about a user before we can receive updates.

We may share your Learning Data with your Institution(s) through integration with their learning management system (LMS). Most LMSs have mechanisms, such as LTI, to support automatically pushing course progress in Grok Learning back to the LMS for marks processing (or “gradebook”).

In some instances, the Grok Learning Platform will be integrated with online course providers, such as Coursera using LTI. These online providers will either be acting as your Institution in these cases, or will be acting on behalf of your Institution.

7.3. Other Registered Users

Depending on your account settings and the policies of your Institution(s), we may also share limited or anonymised Personal Information (like your name and School Year) and some summarised Learning Data (like your score or ranking) to other Registered Users within a particular course and/or at your Institution, for use on leaderboards or forums.

7.4. Grok Learning partners

In some clearly identified circumstances, Grok Learning provides our Platform or delivers content on behalf of partner organisation(s) under contract. We may share your Personal Information and Learning Data with those partners.

This is typically the case where Grok Learning provides our Platform to a higher education organisation. They author their own content, which is branded and owned by the partner. In these cases, the partner is also typically the student’s Institution.

In some cases, the partner is distinct from the user’s Institutions. This is often the case for schools. For example, Grok Learning has a contract with the Australian Computing Academy at the University of Sydney to:

  • provide the Grok Learning Platform for the Academy’s Australian DT Challenges;
  • create and deliver the National Computer Science School (NCSS) Challenge.

Again, in both of these cases, the content is clearly branded as ACA or NCSS.

If you enrol in these Challenges, your Personal Information and Learning Data is managed by Grok Learning on behalf of the University of Sydney, and so the University also has access to your data.

Our Partners and Sponsors Register documents the current partnerships, what content they support, and what data is shared with the partner in each instance.

7.5. Grok Learning sponsorships

In some clearly identified circumstances, Grok Learning may enter into sponsorship agreements with organisations to support or promote particular courses, competitions or events.

We may share de-identified Learning Data, aggregated to Institution and demographic categories with our sponsors for the purposes of reporting usage and demographics for the course, competition or event.

We may also share Institution or Teacher contact information with these sponsors for the distribution of certificates or prizes. For competitions, users should refer to the Terms and Conditions of the specific competition.

7.6. Research organisations

Grok Learning may share your fully-anonymised Learning Data with researchers from reputable research organisations if they propose a clearly-defined research project that we believe will advance the state-of-the-art in computer science education.

We believe that large-scale scientific research has the capacity to greatly improve education and we may provide your Learning Data so that Grok Learning can contribute to research on computer science education and the science of learning.

In some instances, we may work with a research organisation to collect additional data from you (for example, survey data specific to the research) on a purely opt-in basis.

We will never share your Personal Information with a research organisation.

7.7. The general public

We will share aggregated usage statistics and learning statistics (e.g. number of students using the Platform, number of solutions to a problem, number of posts in tutor messaging or on the forums) with the general public so that Grok Learning is able to accurately market and report on our impact on computer science education in schools and higher education.

We will never share your Personal Information with the general public.

8. Data Synchronisation

If your Registered User account is synchronised with an Institution, for example, through an identity provider or learning management system, then depending on the Institution’s policies, the Institution controls the Personal Information we receive, and when that Personal Information may be changed or deleted.

In most cases, we are unable to modify Personal Information or delete an account which is externally synchronised. Please contact the Institution to update or delete your account. Contact our support service at support@groklearning.com if you are unsure.

9. Tutoring Support

For courses with tutoring support, we may share limited Personal Information and Learning Data with paid and volunteer tutors. Some of these tutors may be affiliated with a partner organisation. For school courses with tutoring support, all tutors have New South Wales Working with Children Checks, or equivalent check from the Australian state or territory they reside in. We share this data so that tutors can address you by your nickname, and give you localised advice about your Code and problem solving strategies.

10. Email support

If you contact us about a topic related to an external organisation, we may forward your query to the relevant organisation.

11. Website Security

We use the industry standard encryption software, Transport Layer Security (TLS), for all communication between you and our website. The URL in your browser will show https (rather than http) to show this security feature is in use.

12. Protecting your children online

We believe it is important to provide added protection for children online. We encourage parents and guardians to spend time online with their children to observe, participate in and/or monitor and guide their online activity. If, as a parent or guardian, you are concerned about any information we hold about your child, please contact our support service at support@groklearning.com immediately. We will use our best efforts to promptly remove such information from our records.

13. Consent

By using the Grok Learning Platform, you consent to our Terms of Use. By registering an account or permitting someone to register on your behalf, you hereby consent to Grok Learning collecting and using your data according to our privacy policy.

This privacy policy applies only to our online activities and is valid for visitors to our website and regarding information shared and/or collected there. This policy does not apply to any information collected offline or via channels other than this website.

14. Updates

Our policies were last updated on: October 9th, 2018. Should we update, amend or make any changes to our policies, those changes will be posted below.

  • 2017-09-13. Privacy Policy. Clarified social sharing is not available for students. Removed mention of Google+ sharing. Clarified the use of Google Analytics.
  • 2018-05-24. Privacy Policy. Added much more detail about what private information we store, share and why we use it to in accordance with GDPR guidelines.
  • 2018-10-09. Cookie Policy. Added referral campaign cookies to cookie policy.