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Overview for educators

Using copyright material in the classroom and online
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In Australia, copyright law allows educators to use third party copyright material for educational purposes without having to seek permission from the copyright owner.

The use of third party copyright material for educational purposes is permitted through special statutory and voluntary education licences and exceptions within the Copyright Act.

Different education licences and exceptions apply depending on how the material is being used, and whether you are using:

Download our printable guide to using copyright material in the classroom and online.

About the education licences
  • The Copyright Act contains two statutory licences under which the University can copy and communicate certain copyright material for educational purposes subject to a number of conditions. The statutory licences are set out in Part VA and Part VB of the Copyright Act.

    In addition, the University has entered into a voluntary Music Licence with the Australian music industry collecting societies APRA, AMCOS, ARIA and PPCA. The Music Licence enables staff and students to copy and communicate sound recordings for educational purposes, perform music at free University events, and play music on campus.


    Part VA licence

    The Part VA licence is a provision within the Copyright Act that allows the University to copy and communicate broadcast television and radio for educational purposes, without copyright clearance.

    Australian universities pay a quarterly education licence fee to Screenrights. Screenrights samples the universities’ use of television and radio broadcast materials, and distributes royalty income to copyright owners based on the results of these surveys.

    All copies must contain a Part VA warning notice.


    Part VB licence

    The Part VB licence is a provision within the Copyright Act that allows the University to copy and communicate text works (literary and dramatic works), images and printed (sheet) music for educational purposes, without copyright clearance.

    Australian universities pay a quarterly education licence fee to the Copyright Agency. The Copyright Agency samples the universities’ use of copyright materials, and distributes royalty income to copyright owners based on the results of these surveys.

    The licence allows the copying of text and images from any source or format, including digital or hardcopy, online or offline, and published and unpublished content.

    The copying of literary and dramatic works and sheet music is limited to a “reasonable portion” (see “text works” above). The copying limits apply across the whole university. To manage copying limits, all literary and dramatic works and sheet music must be communicated via the University’s Unit of Study Readings Service. The Unit of Study Readings Service is an important tool that helps the University manage copyright and the provisions of the Part VB licence.

    All copies must contain a Part VB warning notice.


    Music Licence

    The Music Licence is an agreement between the Australian universities represented by Universities Australia, and the music collecting societies APRA, AMCOS, ARIA and PPCA.

    The Music Licence broadly includes the following rights:

    • copying music or sound recordings for educational purposes
    • performing music in public at free university-run events
    • playing music in the workplace
    • playing music on hold

    All copies must be made from legitimate sources. Sound recordings created or copied under the Music Licence must include the following statement as metadata, or a label:

    "This recording has been made by The University of Sydney under the express terms of an educational licence between it, ARIA, AMCOS, APRA and PPCA and may only be used as authorised by The University of Sydney pursuant to the terms of that licence"

 

This information is provided as general information only. It provides a basic introduction to copyright and is not intended to be comprehensive.