Copyright Considerations for Rapid Shifting to Online Course and Exam Delivery

"The Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) has developed some copyright guidance to assist in the rapid transition to online course and exam delivery."

Quick Copyright Tips for Digital Delivery

Key points to remember:

  1. Most of the legal issues are the same whether the teaching is done in person or online.
  2. If it was okay to do in class, it is often okay to do online – especially when your online access is limited to the same enrolled students.
  3. You can continue to apply the University of Saskatchewan (USask) Fair Dealing Guidelines.

Additional advice:

  • Use your university password-protected learning management system (LMS), such as BlackBoard or One45, to make material available to your students. Use lecture capture software (e.g., Panopto) to deliver lectures with copyrighted content.
  • Post your in-class slides to your LMS. Slides provided by textbook publishers can almost always be used, according to their Terms of Use.
  • Sharing audiovisual material like films and audio files is more complex. However, you can still link to legally posted online content (from YouTube etc.) and the University Library subscribes to film and video databases that you may link to. Standard commercial streaming options like Netflix, Crave or Disney Plus that students may also subscribe to can be an option – though some students may not have access to those services.
  • The Copyright Office can help you check readings, create links to ebooks and journal articles, and more.

logo for the CC-By-NC license This resource has been adapted for Canadian universities by the Canadian Association of Research Libraries from material prepared by the Copyright Office, University of Minnesota document Copyright Services, Rapidly shifting your course from in-person to online. Unless otherwise noted, all content is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License. We would like to acknowledge some contribution of adaptation language from University of Toronto Scholarly Communications & Copyright Office and Ryerson University Library. Additional modifications to this version were by made the University of Saskatchewan Copyright Office.

This information is also available as a PDF for download.

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