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Copyright Guidelines

UniSA copyright guidelines


learnonline is the University’s designated learning management system for online delivery of course content to students. Third party copyright material must not be made available on learnonline unless permission is received, a licence has been obtained, or a copyright exception applies. Where material is uploaded directly to learnonline, it is the responsibility of the relevant Course Coordinator to ensure that evidence of any licence (including open licences) or permission is retained. Requests for assistance with seeking permission to use portions of works in UniSA teaching materials should be submitted using the Permission Request Form.

The University's course readings system should be used when making readings available, including linking to Library resources such as online journal articles, ebooks, or audiovisual content.

Finding and using resources for your course

UniSA supports the use of openly licensed resources in course design. These resources may have less restrictive terms of use, making them an easier option to use in your course, compared to other types of licences.

The Library can help you find relevant resources, use course readings, find open educational resources, advise on textbooks, support program evaluation reviews, and support new program and course compliance statements.

Online resources accessed via the UniSA Library are governed by contractual licence agreements which dictate how those resources can be used. The terms of these agreements override the terms of the Copyright Act.

Material reproduced or placed online in reliance on the Educational Licence in the Copyright Act must only be accessible to UniSA students and staff. Material made available under this licence must be password-protected and include a Copyright Warning Notice. This notice must appear before or at the same time as the material is accessed.

Copyright Notice 113P

The Educational Licence grants the University the right to copy and communicate limited amounts of text, images and broadcast material for the educational benefit of enrolled students. Activities such as research, marketing and promotion or engagement (e.g. public lectures) are not covered by the Licence.

Podcasts which have been created exclusively for the internet (i.e. not broadcast free-to-air) cannot be copied for the educational purposes of the University. You may, however, link to these materials.

All material which you copy or make available online must be attributed.

Lecture material: your questions answered

May I upload my lecture to YouTube if only my students have access to the recordings? 

If your lecture contains text, images, audio or video in which copyright is owned by someone other than you or UniSA, your use of that material will be bound by the conditions under which you copied it. These conditions may vary depending on where you sourced the content from.

What should I do if I leave my lecture recording running while I'm showing a film?

This is permitted if any of the following apply:

  • The film was copied from free-to-air, satellite or pay TV.
  • UniSA has a licence to use the film for teaching purposes.
  • You have written permission from the copyright owner to use the film for teaching purposes.
  • You are critiquing the film or using it to critique something else in your lecture.

Otherwise, you’ll need to remove the film before communicating the recording.

May I use cartoon images in my teaching materials?

Except where the terms of contractual licence agreements apply, you're permitted to use images under the provisions of the Educational Licence.

Can I use images sourced from Google and Microsoft Clip Art in my lecture slides?

Except where the terms of contractual licence agreements apply, you’re permitted to use images found via Google under the provisions of the statutory licence. Communicated material must be attributed.

Use of Microsoft Clip Art is permitted by UniSA’s licence agreement with Microsoft.

I've found an image on a webpage. Am I permitted to include the image in my lecture slides?

You may use images published under Creative Commons licences, as well as open educational resources, according to the terms of the relevant licence.

Under the provisions of the statutory licence, you may also use limited amounts of images made available on webpages, as long as those pages can be accessed without either entering a username/password, accepting a ‘click through’ agreement or making a purchase. Communicated material must be attributed.

How do I ensure my lecture slides are copyright-compliant?

  • Include the Copyright Notice at the beginning.
  • Attribute all content.
  • Include permissions statements where applicable.
  • If unsure, seek advice via Ask the Library.

Can I upload music clips to my course website?

Only if UniSA has the copyright owner's written permission to do so.

What are the rules around recording students in lectures and tutorials, particularly if students may be identified in recordings?

You will need to get the consent of the students to be recorded.

Attribution: your questions answered

What do I need to attribute?

You must attribute everything (e.g. images, text, videos, sound). Even if you’ve altered material to the point that it’s not immediately recognisable, you must still acknowledge the original source. Acknowledging the source of your work will help you avoid claims of plagiarism.

The attribution statement should be clear and legible. If it is not possible to include an attribution statement with the work copied, add it to a list of sources which clearly identifies which citation accompanies which work.

How do I attribute a Creative Commons-licensed image?

Include the image title, the creator's name, a link to the image, and a link to the license. For more information, please see Do I need to attribute OER? on the Evaluate & Attribute page of our Open Educational Resources guide.

What are my options for including images on my course page without displaying the attributions as well?

You may collate your attributions in a document, linked from the course page. If the images have been copied under the provisions of the statutory licence, you must also include a link to the Copyright Notice.

When attributing images copied from a webpage, is it sufficient to only include the URL?

At a minimum you should include the URL as well as the date accessed. If possible, also include the image’s title and creator.

If all the images in my lecture slides are from the same book, do I need to attribute every image on every slide?

A blanket attribution statement at the beginning or end is sufficient. For example, “Unless otherwise stated, all images in this presentation have been copied from [citation details].”

What if I'm the creator of images I use?

Attribute yourself. Not only might you get paid if the Copyright Agency ever audits the sites using your images, but also you are contributing to the academic community at our institution. Additionally, consider linking to your UniSA staff directory page, so that people can get in touch with you. You may also like to consider using a Creative Commons licence. Otherwise, © YourName is acceptable.

What if the source of an item is unclear?

If you cannot identify the source of a work, in the first instance you should consider if it can be replaced with an item for which the source is known. The Library can help you find relevant resources.

If that is not possible and the work is essential to the teaching and learning activities of your course, you should include as much information as possible about where you sourced the work.

Copying and communicating student work

Under the University's intellectual property policy students own copyright in work they produce for assessment at the University.

If you wish to reuse work produced by your students (for instance, to use an an example for other students), you need to get the students' written permission. This permission should be stored with the copied work, and a permission statement should be displayed wherever the work is used.

Copying and communicating resources for exams

The Copyright Act contains a special provision which allows you to reproduce or adapt copyright works for use in exam questions for enrolled students. In these circumstances, there are no restrictions on either the types of material which may be copied or how much of a work may be copied.

However, the provision only applies to content included in an actual test or exam. If the exam is being made available to students as a practice exam or a study aid, the exam provision no longer applies.

Remember to appropriately acknowledge the source of any material you copy. If there is a reason why this might not be appropriate, please contact Ask the Library to discuss.

Copying, adapting and communicating resources for students with disabilities

The Copyright Act includes two exceptions which allow individuals and educational organisations to use copyright material to assist people with disabilities. The two provisions are very similar, and are intended to ensure that people with disabilities have the same access to copyright material as people without disabilities. These provisions apply to students whose disabilities cause difficulty in reading, viewing, hearing or comprehending any type of copyright material, and apply to all types of copyright material—literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works, and films or sound recordings.

Fair dealing for the purpose of access by persons with a disability

A student with a disability—or a person acting on their behalf—may:

  • copy or communicate copyright material
  • make changes to the format of the material
  • add features to the material, if the addition is for the purpose of providing to the student an accessible version of the material—and provided the dealing is fair.

Before exercising this exception, the person copying, modifying or communicating the copyright material must consider the following four factors of fairness:

  • The purpose and character of the action. This will be satisfied if the use is to assist a specific student to engage with the copyright material.
  • The nature of the copyright material. Is the material already accessible in a suitable format?
  • The effect of the dealing upon the potential market for—or value of—the material. Does the proposed use unreasonably interfere with the copyright owner’s commercial exploitation of the material? Even if it does, the resultant market harm must be substantial for the proposed use to be considered unfair.
  • The amount and substantiality of the part taken, compared to the whole work. The more used, the more likely it is to be unfair. However, a copy of the whole work may be required by the student, in circumstances in which the material isn’t available in the format required or with the required accessibility features.

Use of copyright material by organisations assisting persons with a disability

This exception allows universities to make and communicate accessible copies of copyright material to assist students with disabilities, unless the material:

  • is commercially available in a suitable format and at an ordinary commercial price; and
  • is obtainable within a reasonable time.

This exception is designed to be flexible, to ensure copyright material can be converted into the best format available and with appropriate features to help students with disabilities engage with the material. For example:

  • scanning a book for use with assistive technology
  • making adjustments to the size and colour of graphs, tables or text
  • converting books into simplified English
  • providing audio descriptions
  • overriding technological protection measures to convert the work into an accessible format.

Copied and communicated material must be attributed, and include the following Copyright Notice. Click on the Notice to download a .docx copy.

This notice may be spoken at the beginning or end of a sound recording.