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Copyright: KCTCS Libraries & Copyright

This guide will provide resources on the topic of copyright.

How Libraries Navigate Copyright in Academics

Libraries and Librarians play an important role in educational institutions in regards to remaining compliant with copyright laws.  As described in Section 108 of U.S. copyright law, libraries are granted some exceptions to the law in order to allow for a more free exchange of ideas and optimal learning environments. Some ways that libraries can assist faculty, staff, and students at an institution are as follows:

  • Purchasing, processing, and lending physical materials for classroom use and research.
  • Licensing electronic content in databases and other repositories that allows faculty and students to share content legally during in-person, remote synchronous classrooms, and in a remote asynchronous environment.
    • Librarians are available to instruct faculty and students on how to access this information, cite the works properly, and also how to share the content within the online Learning Management System (LMS) (Blackboard) or other electronic methods.
  • Facilitating physical and electronic course reserves to ensure that copyrighted materials are used and shared responsibly 
  • Librarians can also consult with faculty on how to access free to use content, such as Open Educational Resources, to supplement their course materials in place of more expensive, copyright restricted, or obsolete resources.

This section provides resources for further reading and context related to libraries and copyright law.  Most librarians are not copyright experts, but are happy to work with faculty, staff, and students to navigate the copyright landscape with their research skills, professional frameworks, and general knowledge of copyright within a library setting.

A Selection of Books in KCTCS Libraries on Copyright

Libraries and Copyright

Overview of Libraries and Copyright

This guide provides an overview of the application of Section 108 of copyright law exceptions for libraries and archives.  Includes FAQs including photocopying, lending, and course reserves.

Not just for librarians, this guide provides an overview of where libraries and librarians fit into the realm of copyright.

This framework is referenced by librarians as they work with students and faculty through information literacy and research instruction.  There are six concepts:

  1. Authority Is Constructed and Contextual
  2. Information Creation as a Process
  3. Information Has Value
  4. Research as Inquiry
  5. Scholarship as Conversation
  6. Searching as Strategic Exploration

KCTCS Library Presentations and Guides

Course Reserves

A Special Note on Course Reserves

Copies of articles placed on reserve for a course should be reevaluated every semester.  While one may be allowed to use an article for a single semester without obtaining permission, continuing to use the same articles every semester require permission from the copyright holder.

Additional Information about Course Reserves:

Using Content: Library Reserves - Copyright Clearance Center