Copyright can be a complicated aspect of academia. The United States Constitution acknowledges the right of authors to benefit from their work. This right is codified in Title 17 of the U.S. Code, where users are also granted certain rights to use copyrighted information. As information has grown in quantity and technology has changed the formats in which this information is delivered, the laws and guidelines governing the rights of authors and users has become a quagmire of cantankerous debate for experts and muddled perplexity for novices.

The following resources are guidelines to help faculty and staff at Union College gain a better understanding of copyright issues in order to help them make wise and ethical decisions about the use of copyrighted material. This is not legal counsel.


Tips for using copyrighted material in Canvas

When incorporating copyrighted material into your Canvas course, it is important to understand that how that material will be used determines which rules and guidelines apply. When use of Canvas replicates face-to-face classroom with teacher and students simultaneously viewing and discussing the material online USC 17 § 110 (2), commonly known as the TEACH Act, applies. However, if the material you place on Canvas is for students to view at a time of their own choosing outside of the scheduled class period, you need permission in to order to place a copy of the material on Canvas. 

One way to avoid the time-consuming process of obtaining permission to use every document or video you may wish to is to link to the original source of the document rather than copying it to your Canvas course. When linking make sure you use persistent or durable URLs or web addresses. In full text library databases, these persistent URLs are located in a specified field within each record.


EBSCOhost databases
Persistent link to this record (Permalink):

Films on Demand
Title URL: