VCU Libraries provides faculty, researchers, and students with informative resources that can help guide them in the responsible use of copyrighted works and encourage them to exercise their fair use rights. VCU Libraries makes every effort to assure the accuracy of this information but does not offer it as counsel or legal advice. For legal advice, please consult the Office of University Counsel.
In addition to covering the basics of copyright, this guide provides more specific information on how copyright applies to theses and dissertations. When you write a thesis or dissertation, it receives copyright protection, and as the author, you own that copyright. You will be making your thesis or dissertation available online and need to understand your rights and responsibilities as an author. In addition, if you are using others’ works, you will need to ensure that you are either permitted to use the works without permission or that you request permission from the copyright holders. If you plan to continue publishing or creating any kind of original works in your career, understanding copyright will become increasingly important.