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What can I upload to Moodle/Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs) for my students on a course of study?

(Click a title in the question and answer section below for full details)

Further copyright information may be obtained from:

Q. Journal articles and book chapters (the University’s CLA Licence)

The University holds a Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) Higher Education Licence (‘CLA Licence’), which permits photocopies or scans or born-digital copies of journal articles and book chapters (‘Digital Copies’) to be distributed to enrolled students in a lecture (photocopies), or by email, or, more usually, by upload to a password-protected restricted intranet such as Moodle for students enrolled on the course for which the Digital Copies are provided.

Only students on the Course of Study for which the scans of book chapters and journal articles are provided are allowed access to and download of those materials.

Study and research groups are not permitted to scan and upload materials under the CLA Licence.

Materials not allowed for scanning under the CLA Licence include printed music and lyrics, maps, charts and newspapers.

Digital Copies should not substitute for the purchase of an original published edition, i.e. text substitution (either print or electronic).

Digital Copies should not be stored, or systematically indexed, with the intention of creating an e-library.

Digital Copies must not be made available on the publicly accessed Internet.

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If you wish to provide a journal article or extract from a book to your students by email or in Moodle or another restricted intranet at the University, please follow these steps:

  1. Check iDiscover to see if the University or a College Library owns the ‘source edition’ from which the item is to be scanned.

If not, the item may not be made available for distribution unless a copyright fee-paid copy of the chapter or article is obtained from an organisation that holds a document delivery licence with the CLA, e.g. British Library Document Supply Service .

  1. Check to see whether the particular work is part of the CLA Repertoire and may be scanned and distributed by using the CLA Check Permissions search tool .
  1. If the conditions in 1. and 2. are met, the proportion of a book, journal or magazine that may be scanned or copied for each Course of Study is restricted to whichever is the greater of:
  • up to 10% or one chapter of a book (no chapter substitution from the same book or other edition of the same book during the Course of Study)
  • up to 10% or one article of a journal issue (no article substitution from the same journal issue during the Course of Study)
  • up to 10% or one paper of one set of conference proceedings
  • up to 10% or one report of one case from a book of law reports
  • up to 10% of an anthology of short stories or poems or one short story or one poem of not more than 10 pages.
  1. Attach a CLA HE Licence 2019-22 Digital Copy Coversheet Copyright Notice to the front of the Digital Copy so it is the first thing students see when they open the document.

The covering Copyright Notice should have details filled in about the Course of Study the Digital Copy is being released to and the source edition.

If distributing the same materials to two separate courses, attach separate Copyright Notices to each Digital Copy.

  1. Report all this to the CLA Designated Person in your Faculty, Department, etc., often at its Library, who will enter the Digital Copy information on a prescribed CLA Digital Copy Record Form (who will send it to the University’s CLA Licensing Co-ordinator for compilation and submission to the CLA).

Should you not know who is your Faculty’s or Department’s Designated Person,   contact the University’s CLA Licensing Co-ordinator at copyright-help@lib.cam.ac.uk .

  1. Now the PDFs may be distributed by email to your students or to the Moodle site or other restricted intranet site limited to the students on the Course of Study for which the Digital Copies are being provided.

Q. Short quotes and extracts - all types of copyright works, e.g. text, illustrations

‘Fair dealing’ with a copyright work for the sole purpose of illustration for instruction, the ‘teaching exception’ in UK copyright law, permits the copying and display of short extracts or passages from all types of copyright works, including your own published work, in Moodle or another University restricted intranet, if the following conditions are met:

  • the extract is used to illustrate or reinforce a teaching point, not to embellish a presentation
  • only what is reasonably required to illustrate or reinforce a teaching point is copied and provided, i.e. quote only what is necessary to get your point across
  • the extract is provided in a restricted intranet such as Moodle to students on a course of study and is limited to those students being instructed
  • the extract is not made available to the public, e.g. online in a website or open repository or in social media
  • the author/creator and title of the source work must be provided, unless it is impractical to do so.

In addition, fair dealing for the purposes of criticism, review, quotation… in UK law permits lecturers to provide a quotation from a copyright work (whether for criticism or review or otherwise) in material they distribute to their students, provided the following conditions are met:

  • the quotation or extract or passage must be from a published work
  • the quotation or extract or passage must be a directly relevant to and part of a substantial and considered criticism or review of the work and not used merely for illustration
  • the criticism or review must directly accompany the quotation, extract or passage from the work being criticised or reviewed, e.g. on the same or immediately preceding or following PowerPoint slide or page
  • the author/creator and title of the source work must be provided, unless it is impractical to do so. 

Q. Recorded television and radio broadcasts (the University’s Educational Recording Agency (ERA) Licence)

The University’s ERA Licence permits the recording of television and radio programmes, the playing of those recordings to students and making the recordings available in a password-protected intranet such as Moodle/VLE for student use, as long as the following conditions are met:

  • Recordings must be for non-commercial educational purposes only
  • Recordings must not be edited or modified, although extracts may be used
  • Recordings must be marked/labelled with the date of the broadcast/recording, the title of the programme, the name of the broadcaster, and the following statement: ‘This recording is to be used only for educational and non-commercial purposes under the terms of the ERA Licence.’
  • Copies may be made of the broadcast recording, but not of videos and DVDs sold commercially
  • Recordings of broadcasts or extracts thereof may not be incorporated into any commercial video or DVD or other production, nor may they be sold.

ERA Licence conditions are available at: www.era.org.uk .

Q. Links to websites, including YouTube and other videos

You may provide a link to any publicly accessible page of any website, including links to the URLs of YouTube videos and other material legally available on the Internet, unless you suspect that the material posted on the site is infringing or otherwise unlawful.

Q. Out-of-copyright material

If copyright no longer subsists in a work, it is said to be in the ‘public domain’ and no permission is required to copy or use that work or quotations, extracts or excerpts from it, but the source must be acknowledged.

According to UK copyright law, the standard term of copyright is to the end of the calendar year 70 years after the author’s death.  However, the standard term does not always apply, notably for unpublished works that may be in copyright until the end of the calendar year 2039.

Best to consult the following copyright duration charts:

The National Archives copyright duration charts for UK literary, artistic, dramatic and musical works , look for “flowcharts for Crown copyright and non-Crown copyright”;

The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) UK copyright duration information for sound recordings, films and the typographical arrangements of published literary, dramatic or musical works .