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Copyright & Fair Dealing

Can I provide my class with copies of readings and handouts?

YES: a single copy or a short excerpt  from a copyright-protected work may be provided or communicated to each student enrolled in a class or course at Mount Saint Vincent University (distance or on-campus). You cannot copy an entire work (book, journal, or magazine).

Best practices for copying and distributing readings and handouts

  • A short excerpt is commonly interpreted as 10% of a work or 1 single article, chapter, image, or poem from a copyright-protected work containing other artistic works.
  • In a face to face class, do not staple several articles together.  This will become an anthology or a course pack. This scenario is better handled via commercial photocopy services which subscribe to an Access Copyright licence.
  • In an online class site (e.g. Moodle) or when communicating by email, the best practice is to link to resources if there is a legal copy available online, or via the Library's licensed e-resources. If you must scan or digitize multiple documents do not create a single file. This will be considered an anthology.
  • Your handouts must be fee of charge to all students.
  • Avoid systematic or accumulative handouts that in essence would amount to copying an entire work in small installments.
  • Do not copy works that you suspect have been themselves been copied or posted online without the consent of the copyright holder.
  • Public Domain and most Open Access and Creative Commons licensed material can be copied and handed out in the classroom freely.
  • Materials licensed by the Mount Saint Vincent University Library may have different conditions. For example the amount that may be printed from an e-book may vary from 5% to 20% depending on the publisher.
  • Please make sure that all work is properly cited.