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Copyright for Faculty

For more information about copyright, see our guides on:


Questions About Copyright?

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Hillary Miller
Cabell Library, 121-C
(804) 827-0462

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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.

What are Open Licenses?

Authors use open licenses to grant permissions for use of their works in ways beyond what copyright normally allows. Open licenses do not replace copyright but work alongside it, allowing authors to keep their copyrights while permitting others to use their works.

Creative Commons licenses are the most commonly used open licenses for open educational resources (OER). These licenses come in a variety of forms, giving authors multiple choices in how their works can be used. OER are made available with the 5R permissions, and authors can apply Creative Commons licenses to their works to provide these permissions:

  1. Retain: Make, own, and control copies of the content
  2. Reuse: Use the content in a variety of ways
  3. Revise: Adapt, adjust, modify, improve, or alter the content
  4. Remix: Combine the original or revised content with other OER to create something new
  5. Redistribute: Share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others

What are Creative Commons Licenses?

Choose and Apply a Creative Commons License

Reuse and Remix Openly Licensed Works

When reusing and remixing openly licensed works, it is important to provide accurate attribution to the original author and to make it clear when a work has been adapted.