Copyright and teaching

Knowing when and how to use copyright material for teaching

The use of third-party copyright material for educational purposes is permitted through special statutory and voluntary education licences and exceptions within the Copyright Act 1968. Different licences and exceptions apply depending on how the material is being used and whether you are using:

  • text works (such as books, book chapters, journal articles)
  • artistic works (such as images, photographs, figures)
  • broadcasts (including webcasts of broadcasts) 
  • multimedia (including slidesets)
  • video works (including DVDs and online streaming videos)
  • music and sound recordings

Sharing learning material with students

Learning material that is provided by exception or licence should only be accessed by students using the library's One Search, or within the Learning Management System, generally via the Unit Readings.

Entire copies of journal articles from paywalled databases such as Proquest or LexisNexis, cannot be shared directly as uploads to the LMS, either as text or PDFs. The university does not have a licence to copy and share this way. You must use Unit Readings to provide a copyright compliant link to the licenced article. 

Do not provide access to copyright material by uploading it to other systems such as Dropbox, YouTube, or sending it via email. Students should be reminded not to share copyrighted material with others beyond the LMS.

Please see the Copyright at UWA webpage for information on how to locate free-to-use resources for teaching.

Your Librarian Support Team can help you to locate or obtain course materials that can be shared with students via Unit Readings, the LMS or One Search. 


Assisting persons with a disability

Text works

Different copyright limits apply depending on the original material type – a print book, an ebook or a website. Before including copyright material in your PowerPoint presentations, or uploading copyright material to your LMS unit, check the copyright compliance guidelines for the LMS (at the bottom of this page).

Artistic works

An artistic work may be an image, photo, drawing, graph, table, or figure.

Multimedia and slidesets


Video works

Music and sound recordings

Learning Management System

Information on this page has been adapted with permission from the University of Sydney. This information is provided as general information only and is not intended to be comprehensive.

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