This guide was designed solely for informational purposes for Georgian College students, faculty & staff.
All other users are encouraged to check and confirm the information with their institution.
This site is prepared by library staff and is not reviewed by legal counsel.
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COVID: Online Course and Copyright Considerations
Quick Copyright Tips for Online Delivery
- Most of the legal issues are the same whether the teaching is done in person or online using Blackboard.
- If it was okay to do in class, it is often okay to do online – especially when your online access is limited to the same enrolled students.
- You can continue to contact the Library about the application of the Fair Dealing Guidelines provided in the Georgian College Copyright Policy.
- Email us at email@example.com for library support:
- Copyright guidance
- eReserves creation
- course resources (books, articles, videos)
- finding alternate content to support online course delivery
Free to Use
- Library databases (includes articles and video streaming)
- Books on Library Reserve
- Articles on Library Reserve (that meet copying guidelines)
- Works in public domain
- Creative Commons, Flickr, Pixabay
- Application of Copyright Act and Supreme Court decisions:
- Scan and upload articles or book chapter to Blackboard
- Copy of an article/book chapter for each student in class (meets copying guidelines)
- Upload PowerPoint slideshow with images to Blackboard
- Modify or adapt an image
- Show DVD in class
- Individual created mash-up for non-commercial purpose
- Link to a website, blog or wiki
Ask the Library
- Copying more than copying guidelines
- Requesting permission from publisher or copyright owner
- Recording a webinar
- Library Subject Specialists assistance with readings or course material
- Anything else...Please ask!
Please contact the Library for guidance in the application of this exception.
Fair Dealing is an exception in the Copyright Act. Sections 29, 29.1 and 29.2 state a work used for the purpose of research, private study, education, parody or satire, criticism, review, and news reporting does not infringe copyright. To qualify for fair dealing, two tests must be passed.
- The first test is that the "dealing" must be for a purpose stated in the Copyright Act. This includes research, private study, education, parody or satire, criticism, review, and news reporting. Educational use of a copyright-protected work passes the first test.
- The second test requires that the dealing must be considered "fair". In landmark decisions made in 2004 and 2012, the Supreme Court of Canada provided guidance as to what this test means in educational institutions. The six factors for this test are:
- The purpose of the dealing.
- The character of the dealing.
- The amount of the dealing.
- The availability of alternatives to the dealing.
- The nature of the copyright-protected work.
- The effect of dealing on the copyright-protected work.
Supreme Court decisions
The Supreme Court of Canada provides guidance for educational institutions that include:
- Short excerpts from a copyright-protected work may be used by teachers, instructors, professors, and staff members in paper or electronic form for the purposes of research, private study, criticism, review, news reporting, education, satire, or parody.
- When using the short excerpt for news reporting, criticism, or review you must mention the source and, if given in the source, the name of the author or creator of the work.
- A copy of a short excerpt from a copyright-protected work may be provided or communicated to each student enrolled in a class or course
- as a class handout
- as a posting to a learning or course management system that is password protected or otherwise restricted to students of the College
A short excerpt may mean:
- up to 10% of a copyright-protected work (including a literary work, musical score, sound recording, and an audiovisual work)
- one chapter from a book
- a single article from a periodical
- an entire artistic work (including a painting, print, photograph, diagram, drawing, map, chart, and plan) from a copyright-protected work containing other artistic works
- an entire newspaper article or page
- an entire single poem or musical score from a copyright-protected work containing other poems or musical scores
- an entire entry from an encyclopedia, annotated bibliography, dictionary or similar reference work
No copies may be made of the following:
- Unpublished works
- Proprietary workbooks, work cards, assignment sheets, tests or examination papers
- Instruction manuals
- Newsletters with restricted circulation to a fee-paying clientele
- Business cases which are made available for purchase
Content that is posted and shared within Blackboard is intended for educational purposes for students enrolled in the course for the duration of the course only. Permission to share, post, or copy it elsewhere must be provided by the copyright holder, otherwise, it is a violation of Copyright.
Copyright Training Modules
Ontario Colleges have put together a set of training videos/modules to help you familiarize yourself with the new copyright laws & procedures. All faculty are encouraged to review these 8 modules
They can be accessed from:
In addition, the Learning Portal: Copyright FAQ section provides guidance on common teaching and learning activities related to copyright. Video explanations and tip sheets/summaries are available for your viewing.
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