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Copyright: Information for Teaching

Introduction for teaching

There are various ways you can use copyrighted material in your teaching - either directly in Lectures, or posted onto VITAL - without having to gain permission first or risk infringing copyright law.

Use of Materials in Lectures and Lecture Capture:

Built into the UK copyright law are ‘Acts Permitted in relation to Copyright Works’.

These acts are often referred to as ‘Copyright Exceptions’ i.e. exceptions to copyright law.

Copyright Exceptions and Lectures:

Copyright exceptions allow LIMITED use of copyrighted material for educational purposes in lectures WITHOUT having to gain permission and WITHOUT infringing copyright law.

Copyright Exceptions for Education:

  • The material is included solely to illustrate a point;
  • The material is included for the purpose of criticism or review;
  • The material is being used for quotation;
  • The material is included for the purpose of caricature, parody or pastiche;

Fair Dealing:

For ANY of the above copyright exceptions to be applied, the use of the material must ALSO come under the concept of ‘fair-dealing’ i.e.

  • The amount of the material used must be reasonable and appropriate to the specific purpose - usually only part of a work may be used.
  • Use of the material must not interfere with the commercial interests of the rights holder
  • The material must not be used for commercial purposes;
  • The material must be accompanied by a sufficient acknowledgement/attribution;

Here is an example of how to give attribution to a PowerPoint or Word Document:

Joseph Mallord William Turner (1839) The Fighting Temeraire. Available at: (Accessed 29 June 2018).



The University's Lecture Capture Policy can be found here.

Further information is given in the individual resource headings, below.

The University pays for the Copyright Licencing Agency's Higher Education Licence. This helps to simplify your processes for using 3rd party content in your teaching. See the video below.


Top Copyright Tips for Teachers

Copyright for Teaching Materials




Contact us

For assistance with the recording and reporting procedure and initial queries about the Licence, please contact the appropriate Liaison Librarian

Further enquiries about copyright and licensing, please contact the Licensing Manager.

If any person becomes aware that any defamatory, inaccurate or copyright infringing material is included within VITAL or any other reason why it would be expedient for the University to remove the materials whilst an investigation is undertaken by the Head of Department, they must contact the University Computing Services Department immediately.