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Copyright for Educators: The Basics

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What Does Copyright Protect?

Copyright law protects original works including things like novels, songs, software, or works of art. 

Only copyright holders may:

  • reproduce the work
  • create modified versions of the work
  • distribute copies of the work
  • publicly perform or display the work

For more details, see What Does Copyright Protect? from copyright.gov.

Copyright Law

U.S. copyright law provides some exceptions for educational institutions.

  • Section 110 - on publicly displaying and performing copyrighted works in the classroom
  • Section 108 - on reproductions for libraries and archives
  • Section 107 - "fair use" for certain purposes. See Fair Use section for more details.

Creative Commons Copyright

Portions of this guide were adapted from the CSULB Copyright and Fair Use guide.