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Faculty & Staff Services: Copyright Guidelines

Find information on services available to CNU Faculty & Staff.


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Copyright Resources

For comprehensive copyright information, visit

Copyright Guidelines for Course Reserve Readings

The Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the photocopying or other reproduction of copyrighted materials. Section 107 of the Copyright Law sets four factors as guidelines for determining fair use of material. Declaring fair use is complex and conducting a four-factor fair use analysis is critical to any good faith fair use assertion.

  • Four factors of fair use:
    -- Purpose and character of the use - whether it is for commercial or nonprofit educational uses, though not all educational uses are fair use
    -- Nature of the work being copied - reproducing a factual work is more likely to be fair use than a creative work
    -- Amount and significance of portion being copied - reproducing smaller portions of a work is more likely to be fair use than large or essential portions
    -- Effect of the copying on the market for the original - uses which have no or little market impact are more likely to be fair than those that interfere with potential markets
  • In order to comply with fair use guidelines:
    -- Materials will be placed on reserve at the initiative of the faculty for the sole purpose of educational use.
    -- Access will be limited to currently enrolled CNU students, faculty and staff.
    -- All materials will be removed from reserve at the end of each semester.
    -- For copyrighted materials, the original copyright statement from the item or a copyright warning notice will appear on an introductory page or screen.
    -- There will be no charge for access to reserve materials.
  • Acceptable materials generally include:
    -- A single article from a journal issue
    -- A single chapter or less than 10% of a book
    -- Materials created by the faculty, such as lecture notes and exams

The total amount of material on reserve for a class should be small in proportion to the total assigned reading for that class when invoking fair use.

Additional Copyright Resources

Association of American Universities. Campus Copyright Rights and Responsibilities: A Basic Guide to Policy Considerations.

Stanford University Libraries. “Measuring Fair Use: The Four Factors”, Copyright and Fair Use Overview

U.S. Copyright Office. Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code),

American Library Association.  Copyright Information.

University Of Minnesota Libraries. “Using Existing Works”, Copyright Information Services

University of Texas System. “Fair Use of Copyrighted Materials”, Copyright Crash Course

Copyright Clearance Center.  Copyright Basics Video  - short video on the basics of copyright.

Trible Library provides links to other websites to aid in research and is not responsible for the content or privacy policy of those sites.