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Library reserves services; Copyright & Fair Use; Creating Persistent Links.

Lesley University Policy on Use of Copyrighted Works

Lesley University Library: Copyright & Fair Use

The Lesley University Library provides Course Reserves services to make a wide range of materials readily available at the faculty’s request for educational use to students. Materials eligible for Course Reserves fall into two very broad categories: those for which copyright permission is not necessary; and those for which copyright permission may be necessary.

To determine whether textual material can be legitimately used under the Copyright Fair Use guidelines, many aspects of all four "fair use" factors must be weighed. In analyzing these criteria, the following factors weigh in favor of Fair Use:

  1. Educational use is defined as teaching, research, scholarship, criticism, comment; transformative or productive use (changes the work to serve a new purpose) or other appropriate nonprofit use.
  2. The nature of the work is factual, nonfiction, or news and is a published work.
  3. The amount of textual material used is a small quantity; the portion used is not central to the entire work; the total amount is appropriate to support the lesson or make the point.
  4. There is no significant effect on the market or potential market for the copyrighted work when there is an absence of a licensing mechanism, unresponsiveness of the copyright holder, access is restricted for students enrolled in the class or other appropriate group, and it is first time use by a class of students.

In cases where the copyright holder cannot be located or is unresponsive, the Library will consider this a demonstration of a good faith effort to obtain permission.

To safeguard reserve materials, the Library will adhere to the following:

  • Copies to be used for Course Reserves services must be lawfully obtained either by the faculty member or the library.
  • Material not covered by fair use will be used while pursuing copyright permission, and will be removed immediately if permission is denied.
  • Materials on Course Reserves will be removed at the end of each semester.
  • All materials placed on Course Reserves must have a full bibliographic citation and the copyright statement clearly on the first page.
  • Course Reserves materials will be accessible on the FLO Catalog, Course Reserve tab, under instructor name and course name.
  • Student papers will be accepted for reserves only with the written permission of the student. Grades and instructor comments must be deleted from the paper.

For answers to specific questions on copyright permissions for Course Reserves, please contact Micki Harrington at

Materials for Which Permissions Are Not Necessary

The following textual materials are examples of types for which copyright permissions are not necessary. This list is not exhaustive; other exemptions may apply:

  • Content in library subscribed databases based on specifically negotiated licensing terms provided that it is linked and not copied. For more on using electronic materials in your course Blackboard, see Columbia University's Using Electronic Resources. For instructions on how to link, see Creating Persistent Links.
  • Any materials owned by the library. All library materials are acquired by the Library with the understanding that there will be multiple uses of a limited number of purchased copies.
  • Materials in the public domain which includes content published before 1923 as well as other material never covered or no longer covered by copyright (See: Copyright Term and the Public Domain in the United States 1 January 2007 for specific details).
  • Federal government publications.
  • Open access materials.
  • Any material that the library determines falls under the Fair Use Guidelines.