Washtenaw Community College

Search Washtenaw Community College

Copyright: Exceptions
WCC Home: Copyright Guide: General Copyright Information
Click this icon for print-friendly version Print-friendly format Click this icon to e-mail this web page. E-mail this page


General Information:

Copyright Basics

Copyright Law

How do I protect my work?

Licensing and Permission Resources

What is and is not protected by copyright?

Copyright Exceptions:

DMCA Notice and Take Down Procedures

Introduction and The Classroom Exception

The Fair Use Exception

The Teach Act

WCC Rules of Thumb

Copyright Guide:

General Information»

DMCA Notice and Take Down Procedures

Frequently Asked Questions

Library Copyright Details


WCC Policy

Copyright Home

WCC Rules of Thumb - Copies for Classroom, Coursepacks, and Music

Copies for use in the class are generally covered by the 1976 agreed-upon guidelines set out in Circular 21 from the Office of Copyright. These guidelines may be found at http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ21.pdf and at http://www.umuc.edu/library/libhow/copyright.cfm.

Many believe these guidelines are too restrictive. A rule of thumb similar to that for coursepacks set out below may be followed. Essentially, the guidelines depend on brevity (defined specifically for specific types of material), spontaneity (defined as "no time to get permission), and charging students no more than the cost of the photocopy.

Coursepacks are the quintessential fair use problem in education. If the coursepack is prepared by or copied by a for-profit business, permissions must be obtained.

If, however, you are doing to copying yourself or charging only the cost of the photocopies, fair use may apply. We recommend that you complete and keep a "fair use analysis" for each portion of a copyrighted work that you use. A fair use worksheet is has been developed by Cornell University and is available at http://copyright.cornell.edu/policies/docs/Fair_Use_Checklist.pdf.

This analysis will help to protect you if your right to use the material is challenged. In general, material may be copied for distribution to the students in a coursepack if:
  • The material is limited in amount and does not go to the "heart of the work."
    • single chapters
    • single articles from a journal issue
    • several charts, graphs or illustrations
    • other similarly small parts (in any case no more than 10%) of a work.

  • The material cumulatively is small in proportion to the amount of assigned reading for the course.

  • Any copyright notice on the original is included.

  • Appropriate citations and attributions to the source are given.

You must obtain permission for materials that will be used repeatedly by the same instructor for the same course.

Home / Academics / Services / Activities / News & Events / About Us / Jobs / Contact Us
© 2016 Washtenaw Community College, 4800 East Huron River Dr,  Ann Arbor MI  48105-4800
734-973-3300 / Feedback & Suggestions / | Flickr | You Tube