Canvas and Library course reserves each provide a password-protected environment to allow posting of curricular materials for enrolled students.
Boston College policies for use of Canvas and Library course reserves comply with U.S. Copyright Law, and are developed in accordance with the American Library Association guidelines for Applying Fair Use in the Development of Electronic Reserves Systems and the Association of Research Libraries' Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries.
Principle One of the Code states that “It is fair use to make appropriately tailored course-related content available to enrolled students via digital networks.”
Fair use can be applied to all types of copyrighted materials such as text, images, audio, or video, as long as the material is legally acquired. The fair use exception to the copyright holder’s exclusive rights requires a flexible balancing test based on the particular context in each instance. A good faith effort must be made to assess overall whether a use is fair by considering
Educational use favors a fair use outcome, but satisfies only the first factor. The following have become standard practice to assist a fair use determination:
In cases where a large mount of material is required and fair use cannot be justified, permission may be needed. The Course Pack Coordinator at the college bookstore will obtain publishers' permissions and create a course pack which students can purchase from the bookstore.
Fair use is a doctrine under copyright law that permits certain uses of a work without the copyright holder’s permission. The fair use of a copyrighted work is an exception to the exclusive rights of a copyright holder. Fair use may be made of a copyrighted work for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research. However, the use of a work for one of these purpose does not automatically qualify as a fair use: a nuanced analysis weighing four factors must be done for each factual scenario.
The copyright statute states that the following four factors must be evaluated to determine in whether a use is fair:
For more detailed information on copyright, course materials, and fair use, see the Copyright & Scholarship Guide.
In the teaching context, it may be useful to take the following steps to help qualify a use as fair and protect yourself and the University from infringement liability:
Classroom exceptions may apply and allow your use.