The Nuts and Bolts of Education Copyright Law
It is a wonderful thing that Education Copyright Law is available for educators. It isn’t only teachers that can take advantage of education copyright law. Students are also covered under education copyright law — to a degree. Teachers are able to use copyrighted materials in their classroom and make copies of them. Students are also able to use copyrighted materials in school projects. The key to education copyright law is how often a teacher or student uses copyrighted material, in what way they are using it and how many copies they have of it. It is important that teachers and students do not cross the line of education copyright law or they could be in for some stiff penalties.
It helps many students and teachers to learn what exactly is not copyrighted. Any work that is in the public domain is not copyrighted and can be used in school and for school projects. Work that is not in the public domain is copyrighted and if you use it you should make sure you fall within the fair use or education copyright law regulations.
Many people do not know what exactly fair use copyright regulations are. When you are trying to see if you can use another’s words, you should keep a few things in mind. The answer to the following questions will help you gage whether you would be violating a copyright. First, are you transforming someone else’s work or are you copying it directly? If you are using another person’s work directly, for what purpose and how much of the original author’s work are you using?
Many publishing companies have set rules on how much material they will allow to be quoted in other sources. Some of these ranges start at 100 words or less. However, there are truly no standards to go by, so be careful. You can not assume that keeping your copying fewer than 50 words will allow you to pass under the radar – especially if the original piece is hovering around 125 words itself! There is a greater amount of room to maneuver when it comes to technical writing.
For instance, if you are writing a report on something that involves a lot of reporting from an expert, you would probably need to quote more of their work than you would a fiction novelist’s work. The fair use copyright law enables people to use portions of material that is copyrighted for the purposes of criticism or as commentary.
Individuals who are involved in the distance education field should take a look at the TEACH Act that was made into law in 2002. This Act clearly outlines the requirements that a university or school must be in compliance with when it comes to transmitting copyrighted works via the Internet.
The TEACH Act allows students and teachers to transmit copyrighted works, but they must be within certain guidelines. If the school or university cannot meet these guidelines, the material that is being transmitted via the Internet needs to fall within the fair use copyright act – or the individuals involved need to have permission from the copyright owner.
If you are an educator and you are using copyrighted material make sure it falls within the education copyright law.