Durham College respects both user rights relating to use of copyrighted materials and copyright protection of intellectual property and distribution rights of creators and content providers.

Faculty, staff, and students, are subject to the protections and obligations outlined in the Copyright Act. Use of copyrighted material is also subject to the provisions outlined in DC’s various agreements and licenses with other copyright owners (for example, online databases or other electronic resources).

Members of the College community are responsible for informing themselves about the parameters of both Canada’s Copyright Act and the institution’s licenses and agreements. They must also ensure that any copying completed in connection with College activities complies with these guidelines.

In the absence of such limiting provisions, materials may be reproduced:

  1. In accordance with the fair dealing provisions under the Copyright Act for the purpose of research, private study, criticism, review or news reporting.
  1. Where the material is in the public domain, such as when the term of the copyright protection under the Copyright Act has expired (usually the life of the author plus 50 years).
  1. Where only an “insubstantial” part of the material is reproduced, as under section 3(1) of the Copyright Act, copyright means the sole right to reproduce any substantial part of a work.  In determining whether the portion of the material being reproduced is “substantial” or “insubstantial”, both the quantity, i.e. the amount copied, and the value, i.e. the importance of that portion to the entire work, should be considered.
  1. The following maintenance or management activities in accordance with section 30.1 of the Copyright Act: (1) copying rare or unpublished originals, (2) copying fragile originals, (3) copying into an alternative format, (4) copying for record keeping and cataloguing, (5) copying for insurance and police investigations and (6) copying for restoration.  Making a copy for activities (1), (2) and (3) is not permitted if the work is “commercially available.”

*Adapted from Canadian Library Association Model Policy on Copyright for Libraries

Fair Dealing Guidelines

Copyright Law in Canada protects a wide range of works. As noted in the Act, “copyright”, in relation to a work, means the sole right to produce or reproduce the work or any substantial part of the material, to perform the work or any substantial part of it in public. If the work is unpublished, the copyright holder has the right to publish the work or any substantial part. For further details, please refer to the Copyright Act.

Use of copyrighted works requires permission from the copyright owner unless one of the exceptions in the Copyright Act applies. While the Act contains other exceptions that might apply, “fair dealing” is an important provision within an educational context.

The fair dealing provision outlined in sections 29, 29.1, and 29.2 in the Copyright Act permits the use of a copyright-protected work without permission from the copyright owner or the payment of copyright royalties.

To qualify as fair dealing, two tests must be passed:

  1. The dealing must be for a purpose stated in the Copyright Act: Research, private study, criticism, review, news reporting, education, satire or parody. Educational use of a copyright-protected work passes the first test.
  2. The dealing must be “fair”. In landmark decisions made by the Supreme Court of Canada in 2004 and 2012, six factors were outlined that help to determine whether or not the dealing is fair:
  • Purpose of the dealing
  • Character of the dealing
  • Amount of the dealing
  • Nature of  the work
  • Available alternatives to the dealing
  • Effect of the dealing on the work

The following guidelines provide reasonable safeguards for the owners of copyright-protected works in accordance with the Copyright Act and the Supreme Court decisions.

These guidelines assume that the user is working with a copyright-protected work; a College license does not cover the work; and the copying is a substantial part. These guidelines only deal with situations where fair dealing needs to be considered. There are other exceptions, such as user-generated content, that may be available should fair dealing not apply. These include:

  1. Allowance for college teachers, instructors, professors and staff members to communicate and reproduce, in paper or electronic form, short excerpts (as defined below) from a copyright-protected work for the purposes of research, private study, criticism, review, news reporting, education, satire or parody.
  2. Copying or communicating of short excerpts from a copyright-protected work under these Fair Dealing Guidelines for the purpose of news reporting, criticism or review must mention the source and, if given in the source, the name of the author or creator of the work.
  3. Reproducing a single copy of a “short excerpt” from a copyright-protected work may be provided or communicated to each student enrolled in a class or course:
    1. as a class handout
    2. as a posting to a learning or course management system that is password protected or otherwise restricted to students of the university
    3. as part of a course pack

    A short excerpt can mean:

    1. up to 10% of a copyright-protected work (including a literary work, musical score, sound recording, and an audiovisual work)
    2. one chapter from a book
    3. a single article from a periodical
    4. an entire artistic work (including a painting, print, photograph, diagram, drawing, map, chart, and plan) from a copyright-protected work containing other artistic works
    5. an entire newspaper article or page
    6. an entire single poem or musical score from a copyright-protected work containing other poem or musical scores
    7. an entire entry from an encyclopedia, annotated bibliography, dictionary or similar reference work provided that in each case, no more of the work is copied than is required in order to achieve the allowable purpose.
  4. Copying or communicating multiple short excerpts from the same copyright-protected work, with the intention of copying or communicating substantially the entire work, is prohibited.
  5. Copying or communicating that exceeds the limits in these guidelines may be referred to a supervisor or other person designated by the College for evaluation. An evaluation of whether the proposed copying or communication is permitted under fair dealing will be made based on all relevant circumstances.
  6. Any fee charged by the College for communicating or copying a short excerpt from a copyright-protected work must be intended to cover only the costs of the university, including overhead costs.

If you have a request for material that falls outside of these guidelines, please contact copyright@durhamcollege.ca. Further investigation into the request will follow.

Library Reserves

The Library’s Reserve system complies with copyright law. Consult the Reserves Coordinator concerning restrictions on both hard copy and electronic reserve items.

Print reserves in the library are limited to 1 copy per 30 students to a maximum of 5 copies. A course pack (bound, packaged or assembled photocopies from more than one publication) may be placed on reserve in the library but no further copying of the course pack is permitted.

A single copy in an electronic format may be made available to students for library reserve from a College server. Properly cite resources – a user should always be able to find the source based on the information provided in the citation.

Print and Electronic Resources

Review the Library’s Copyright Guide for an overview of copyright compliance for both print and online resources purchased through Library subscriptions and for information on how to post approved article links within course materials.

Media Resources

Review the Library’s Copyright Guide for an overview of using media in the classroom.

Content Not Requiring Direct Permission

Review the Library’s Copyright Guide for an overview of other copyright-exempt resources that do not require permission.

Consider sharing knowledge more freely by using one of the various non-exclusive Creative Commons licenses.

Plagiarism and Citation Styles

In terms of Copyright, acknowledge sources used; this is Academic Integrity. Plagiarism is the failure to properly acknowledge sources used. Click here for more information about plagiarism. Review the Library’s guides on Citation Styles.

Copyright holders may require a particular citation style or certain information be excluded. For example, licensed library databases or Creative Commons licenses may have specific requirements listed.