Skip to Main Content UACCM logo

Copyright Resource Center

Learn the main topics associated with copyright and ethical reuse of information and copyrighted materials.


Here are examples of ways to comply with copyright law when using the works of others in a higher education setting:

  • Determine whether the work is protected by copyright. If the work has passed into the public domain, no license or permission to use the work is needed.
  • Evaluate whether your intended use qualifies as a "fair use" of the work. See the Fair Use tab for more information.
  • Use works prepared by an officer or employee of the US government as part of that person's official duties. These works are not entitled to domestic copyright protection under US copyright law. (This exception does not apply to works of state or local governments.)
  • Use works made available for free but with specific terms of use under a creative commons license. Visit Creative Commons for more information.
  • Have your students pay for a copy of the book containing the work you want the students to read.
  • Obtain permission from the copyright holder. It is important to plan ahead because obtaining permission may take time and require fees or royalties.