Copyright FAQs - Information and Records Management - University of Canterbury - New Zealand

Copyright FAQs

Q. Can I put a commercial film/dvd up on LEARN?

A. No. A librarian can put this up on LEARN as part of the special rights allowed to librarians under section 56 of the Copyright Act. The can only do this if only one authenticated user can access at any one time.

Q. Can I print multiple copies of articles from electronic databases?

A. Simple answer – No you cannot print multiple copies from electronic databases.
Long answer - While we have many different rights under the Copyright Act and under the various licences which the university holds with copyright companies, none of these extend to electronic resources. The individual database/resource has its own licencing and should be checked to see what they allow.

The most appropriate thing to do is to ezproxy link to the article on LEARN and for the students to access this directly. If the lecturer would like them to have this physically in class she should request that each student prints off their own copy.

By following the explicit instructions of the database licencing agreements we ensure:

  • that the University is not breaching any contracts
  • that students are learning best practice
  • that the correct usage stats for the article are being recorded. The importance of the usage stats is twofold – firstly that the author gets the appropriate copyright payments from the provider, and secondly the library can judge correctly the usage on databases/journals and make the best decisions about which databases to maintain/retain in the future.

Another option – if the hardcopy of the journal article is held by the library, then this can be copied the appropriate number of times in hardcopy. The reason for the difference is that physical copying of hardcopy materials is covered by the licence which the University holds with CLNZ (Copyright Licensing NZ).

Q. Can I reuse my own published material in my thesis?

A. It is each student’s responsibility to ensure that any published work (or parts thereof) in their thesis conforms to the copyright provisions of the publisher and that any guidelines with regard to self-citation are followed.

If copyright is held by a journal publisher the candidate must obtain written permission to include the published work in the thesis. Evidence of permission obtained must be included in the thesis as an appendix. Some publishers will not permit the inclusion of the published version in a thesis but may permit the use of the author’s manuscript version, following peer review (often referred to as the post print).

Q. Can I reuse material from my thesis for a journal publication?

A. The answer is ultimately 'yes' you can use your material from your thesis, but there are a few things which to consider – namely copyright and IP.
Recommended reading:

Students wanting to publish periodical articles derived from the research undertaken for their theses should check that their chosen publishers do not have policies prohibiting publication of theses as prior versions.