Educator's Guide

Copyright & Fair Use

Copyright 101

Copyright provides legal protection for original creative works.

*Books: An entire book cannot legally be copied/printed. Rule is 10% or one chapter (whichever is greater)

*Images: Must have permission, be free domain and/or meet the fair use test.

*Media: Up to 10% of the total item of 3-minutes of motion media, whichever is less. Includes attribution.

*Music: Up to 10% of the total work, but no more than 30 seconds of the music or lyrics. Best to use one of the free license sites from Creative Commons.

Giving Attribution

You can use CC-licensed materials as long as you follow the license conditions. One condition of all CC licenses is attribution. A rule to follow for giving attribution (credit) is to use the acronym TASL (T=Title, A=Author, S=Source, L=License). Helpful sites include:

* Creative Commons Best Practices for Attribution

* WikiHow: Easy to follow directions for giving credit to CC-licensed work

Fair Use 101

Fair Use allows copyrighted material to be used under certain guidelines, without the copyright holder's permission, for purposes such as news reporting, teaching, research, criticism, and parody.

Fair Use consideration includes four factors:

*Purpose and character of use.

*Amount of work to be used.

*Nature of the work.

*Effect of any use on the market for the work.

Information for Teachers:

Creative Commons

Creative Commons (CC) allows users to share their copyrighted images, music, video and other creations freely with one of six main licenses. Works alongside copyright depending upon the license, users can use works in collaborative ways and then, publish and license their final product.

*CC Search for material you can share, use and remix.

*Wikimedia Commons: User created wiki that serves as a "media file repository." Each file is individually licensed by its contributor.

Copyright & Fair Use Resources for Teachers

  • Student introduction of copyright using Disney characters: A Fair(y) Use Tale.
  • Teaching Copyright: A website for teachers with curriculum resources, quizzes.
  • PBS Learning Media: Digital classroom resources
  • ALA's Fair Use Evaluator for determining copyright exceptions.
  • Printable two-page pdf chart, Copyright and Fair Use Guidelines for Teachers.
  • The Center for Social Media's Copyright and Fair Use teaching resources and videos.