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Copyright: Exceptions
WCC Home: Copyright Guide: General Copyright Information
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The Teach Act»





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Teaching with Blackboard: The TEACH Act

What about distance learning? (The Teach Act)
The Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization Act (TEACH Act) amended the Copyright Act to clarify the parameters of the classroom exception for distance learning. Below is a brief outline of TEACH Act provisions. For a fuller explanation and some very spiffy analysis tools, go to North Carolina State University's TEACH Act Toolkit at http://www.provost.ncsu.edu/copyright/toolkit/

Especially recommended for those seeking to take advantage of the TEACH Act's provisions is the checklist and the notice found on NCSU's site.

The provisions of the TEACH Act are summarized below:

Distance Learning: Transmission of copyrighted work for educational purposes:
  • Only accredited nonprofit educational institutions or governmental bodies

  • Performances of nondramatic literary works or musical works

  • Performances of reasonable portions of any other work

  • Display of any other work in an amount comparable to a live classroom
    • BUT NOT: Digital educational works or unlawful copies

  • By, at the direction of, or under the actual supervision of an instructor, and
    • as an integral part of a class session, and

    • as part of systematic mediated instructional activities, and

    • directly related and of material assistance to the teaching content.

  • Transmission must be made solely for and reception limited to students in the course, and
    • the institution must use technology that reasonably prevents retention in accessible form for longer than a class session

    • the institution must implement, as is practical, technology that prevents unauthorized further dissemination in accessible form, and

    • no one can interfere with copyright holder's technological measures that prevent such retention or dissemination

    Note: Conversion from Analog to Digital is acceptable if
    • there is no digital version available to the institution, or

    • the available digital version is technologically protected in a way that prevents TEACH uses












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