You are encouraged to develop course websites using Virtual Campus instead of traditional print course packs. This helps lower student expenses, as they are not obliged to purchase an expensive course pack. It also allows them to access their course documents from almost any location, providing more flexibility and a better overall student experience.
You are also encouraged to consider making use of the Library's Course Reserve Service, which includes the option for digital materials to be retrieved and made available to your student by the Library. Ares, the Library’s course reserve platform, provides a single point of access for all course materials; it can be accessed directly and, if the option is activated, through Virtual Campus as well.
It is possible for you to make use of a course website outside of Virtual Campus, which should be password protected and restricted to students enrolled in your course; however you will then be responsible for ensuring that the website meets all legal requirements. The guidelines below only apply to the use of Virtual Campus.
There is a wide range of material that you may provide to your students. You are encouraged to make use of materials not protected by copyright (see Alternatives to copyright), materials available under Creative Commons and open access licences, and your own unpublished materials, for which you do not require any permissions. Alternatively, you should make use of any applicable Exceptions to copyright.
Note: if you are unsure as to what you are permitted to do with a work, remember that providing your students with a link, which directs them to the material in question, is always permitted! For more information on creating persistent links, see Linking to full-text articles and e-books.
For dealings that extend beyond the Exceptions to copyright, take the following steps to obtain permission for use:
Make sure to only include sources which are likely protected by copyright and not available under open access – see Alternatives to copyright and Creative Commons and open access.
For any materials obtained in electronic format from the Library catalogue, check to see if reproduction of the materials to Virtual Campus is allowed – see Using electronic resources. If it is, you do not need to include them. Note: please make every effort to ensure that most, if not all, of your sources fall under an exception, such as fair dealing, are licensed, or are not protected by copyright.
Once approved, you may upload your materials onto Virtual Campus. For assistance with uploading materials, contact the Teaching and Learning Support Service.
Differences between Virtual Campus and the classroom
The Copyright Act, at s. 30.01, suggests that instructors and students using a learning management system (such as Virtual Campus) can generally use the same exceptions as if they were sitting in a classroom. See Using copyright-protected materials in the physical classroom for details on classroom exceptions. However any copies made under this principle must be destroyed 30 days following the receipt of final grades for a course, including copies made by students.
Faculty members or their staff who post content prepared by a student on Virtual Campus should obtain permission, and confirm that the content does not include copies of copyright-protected works that infringe copyright.