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Copyright @ Dominican: Copyright Law

Copyright and Dominican University of California

Dominican University of California is committed to upholding United States copyright law.  With much of our student and faculty work being made available online and freely available to the public, education of our faculty and students in regards to the proper use of copyrighted material in the classroom and in their academic work is a priority. Copyright can be complex but faculty and students should have a basic understanding of the issues surrounding copyright so as to avoid legal penalties.

The purpose of this guide is to help faculty and students understand the basics of using copyright, Fair Use, the TEACH Act, the use of photographs and other material in theses, and using alternative materials that are free of the normal copyright restrictions.

Copyright Defined

Copyright Law is defined by Title 17 of the United States Code. Section 102 (a) states:

Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. Works of authorship include the following categories:

(1) literary works;

(2) musical works, including any accompanying words;

(3) dramatic works, including any accompanying music;

(4) pantomimes and choreographic works;

(5) pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works;

(6) motion pictures and other audiovisual works;

(7) sound recordings; and

(8) architectural works.

Disclaimer and Attribution


The information presented in Copyright @ DUC on the Use of Copyrighted Material is intended only for general information. It is not intended to substitute for legal advice. The staff and librarians at Archbishop Alemany Library do not accept liability with respect to any claim, proceeding, loss or damage arising from any faculty member or student’s use of copyrighted material, uses of the Copyright @ DUC website, and other provisions relating to copyright law.

An attorney should be consulted for clarification of any issues pertaining to uses of copyrighted materials and other matters related to copyright law. An attorney should also be consulted, whenever questions arising from the use of copyrighted materials, or which require legal interpretation or analysis of any copyright statutory provisions, including but not limited to Title 17 United States Code, case law decisions, Conference on Fair Use Guidelines, or any other matters regarding copyright usage, in which there is doubt.


Material on this site was used and modified with permission from Utah State University

Michael Pujals

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Michael Pujals
Library 105
Creative Commons License

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