When you design courses and teach your students, you will copy and share many copyright-protected works with them, and you may also create derivative works such as slide presentations and lecture notes. Therefore, you must understand what rights and responsibilities you have as an educator under Canadian copyright laws, and ensure that you follow them.
The Canadian Copyright Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-42) governs all copying in Canada, and aims to balance the rights of copyright holders and users.
On this page you will find the exceptions to infringement named in the Copyright Act that relate to education, research and private study.
Fair dealing is an exception in the Copyright Act (sections 29, 29.1 and 29.2) that allows users to copy a short excerpt of a work for the purposes of research, private study, education, criticism, review, news reporting, parody, or satire. At Centennial College, copies made using the fair dealing exception are subject to the Centennial College Fair Dealing Policy for Copyright-Protected Work.
Although the term “fair dealing” is not defined in detail in the legislation, there is some guidance provided in the fair dealing sections of the Copyright Act. Additionally there are six criteria to be used in determining whether the use of a work is fair, as proposed in the landmark Supreme Court of Canada case CCH Canadian Limited v. Law Society of Upper Canada. These six criteria to use for determining whether use of a work is fair dealing are:
Please note that the fair dealing exception only applies if the work copied is cited with at least the source of the material and the name of the creator (if the name of the creator is available) so it is very important to include citations with any fair dealing copies.
Copying under the fair dealing exception may not apply if a license agreement is in place or a digital lock (TPM) prevents access to the resource.
Please note that these exceptions do not apply if an appropriate copy is commercially available. Also, any intermediate copies made under these exceptions must be destroyed as long as the intermediate copy is no longer needed.
Libraries, archives and museums may also copy an entire article of a scholarly, scientific or technical nature provided the copy is used for a fair dealing purpose. Articles in a newspaper or periodical which are not scholarly, scientific or technical can also be copied if the article is at least 12 months old at the time the copy is made and provided the copy is used for private study or research purposes.
Libraries, archives and museums may provide a copy of a work based on exceptions in the Copyright Act (sections 30.1, 30.2, 30.3, 30.4 and 30.5) to a person who has requested the work through another library. The copy can be provided in an electronic format, provided that measures are taken to ensure the following:
Persons with a perceptual disability (i.e., with difficulty reading or hearing) or a person acting on their behalf, may copy a work protected by copyright in alternate formats such as braille, talking books or sign language. This exception in the Copyright Act (section 32) does not apply to a cinematographic work, such as a movie. Additionally, making a copy in an alternate format is not permitted by this exception if the work is already commercially available in an appropriate alternate format.
The section "Exceptions in the Copyright Act" is adapted from the University of Saskatchewan Copyright website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada Licence.
Centennial Libraries licenses academic journals and e-books on behalf of students and faculty. These licenses give you easy access to thousands of scholarly resources, but they take precedence over fair dealing and other copyright exemptions.
You should not use the fair dealing exception for licensed content..
Every database subscription uses different licensing terms: some allow uploading works to eCentennial and including them in course packs, but others do not. Please consult CLEAR, Centennial’s licence permissions database, to learn how you can share licensed content with your students.
Please contact us with additional questions or concerns.