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Library Services

Faculty Resources - Library

Copyright Guidelines for Faculty

Fair Use Defined

  • Fair Use is not a blanket permission to use works for an educational purpose. Fair Use is a legal defense against the litigating copyright owner.
  • The courts will make Fair Use decisions based on four factors found in U.S. copyright law (Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act): the purpose of the use, the nature of the original work, the amount of the original work used, and the effect of the use on the market for the original. Congress and the courts have offered some insight into the specific meaning of these factors.
  • The guidelines below are Kishwaukee College’s best advice to keep you and the college safe from litigation.

The copies you make and distribute to your students in a face-to-face class—or make available digitally in an online section—must be:


  • For Educational use
  • Not sold to the student

Nature of the work:

  • Factual, nonfiction, news (not a creative work such as a poem or work of art, or a consumable such as a workbook page or practice test)
  • Published work

Amount used:

  • Small quantity (excerpt of less than 1000 words, or a portion less than 10% of the whole – whichever is less)
  • Amount is appropriate for the specific educational purpose
  • If you copy and distribute more than 10% you must guard against the effect on the market for the original.

Effect on the market for the original:

  • The College or user owns a lawfully purchased copy of the original (don’t copy a copy or use pirated videos).
  • Single use. You will not use the article again in any other semester or in any other institution. Limited to 9 occurrences per semester.
  • Full credit or citation is given to the copyright owner. Must include the “c-in-a-circle” © (found in Microsoft Word under the Insert tab, on the toolbar with Equations and Symbols), the year of publication and the name of the copyright holder.
  • Access to the work is restricted to students enrolled in your class.
  • The time allowed for access to the work is minimized to help prevent re-distribution of the work, and the time and amount for access is equal for face-to-face and online sections.

Getting Permission

You must secure permission from the copyright owner if:

  • You wish to use a creative work such as a novel, poem, play or artwork
  • You wish to use the work outside the classroom, such as for a student club event
  • You wish to use the same article or work semester after semester
  • You use the same article or work in multiple institutions
  • You wish to sell materials to students in a course pack through the bookstore
  • You wish to sell copies of your PowerPoints in the Bookstore and they include copyrighted images, including those images provided by textbook publishers for display in classroom use

Help for securing permission can be obtained:

  • by directly contacting the copyright holder
  • by the Library through the Copyright Clearance Center
  • and by the Bookstore through their course pack creation provider

Contacts for copyright questions:

Frances Whaley

Director of Library and Academic Support Services

Carol Wubbena

Instruction Librarian

Tim Lockman

Instructional Designer

Anne-Marie Green

Dean of Academic Support & Effectiveness