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Basics of copyright rules, restrictions, and permissions for students, faculty and staff.

Copyright for students

Copyright Tips for Students

The general guidelines listed on the Fair Use page apply to students as well.This is particularly important if you will be sharing presentations online in any way. If you are posting to YouTube or any social media platform, or in any venue outside the class room or Blackboard class module, you need to be aware of use of copyrighted material in your videos or PowerPoint presentations., 

Open Educational Resources

Open Educational Resources (OERs) are any type of educational materials that are in the public domain or introduced with an open license. The nature of these open materials means that anyone can legally and freely copy, use, adapt and re-share them. OERs range from textbooks to curricula, syllabi, lecture notes, assignments, tests, projects, audio, video and animation. (From UNESCO

These are materials that can give you wider access to information beyond what is available in traditional published books and journals. Open Access Journals especially can help you to find materials freely available on a wide array of subject areas.

These are, however, still covered by copyright, so you still have to acknowledge the source! 

Avoiding Plagiarism

Plagiarism is the use of someone else's intellectual property without their permission, and quite often without acknowledging the author or creator. It can be done deliberately or unintentionally. In either case, it could cause you to lose credit for an assignment, fail a course, or in some instances, be asked to leave the school.

It's easy to copy and paste from materials you find on-line, but even if they don't list an author or contain a copyright symbol, you must assume they are protected by copyright. Rewording a couple of sentences is not enough to avoid a charge of plagiarism, either. Your best practice is to acknowledge the source of the information; for example:

"On the website Monkey Doll Commons, it is stated that there are several schools of thought regarding the origins of the Monkey Dolls, including:..."

Or, "There are several schools of thought regarding the origins of Monkey Dolls, including...(Monkey Doll Commons, 2018).

Any time you are using ideas or wording that are not entirely alone, you should acknowledge the source, using the format specified by your professor--APA, MLA, etc.

The only time you don't need a source would be when citing common facts such as: the number of states in the US, If you are unsure whether you need to cite a source for your material, you can consult the library. Librarians will be happy to help you figure out whether ypu need to cite a source for something.

Other Resources on Campus

For assistance with citation formats, copyright questions, or access to library materials:

Ask a Librarian

For general assistance on writing/formatting/proofreading papers:

Academic Success Center


Last Updated: Apr 15, 2024 10:08 AM