Copyright at Cal Lutheran

California Lutheran University now holds an Annual Copyright License from theCopyright Clearance Center (CCC). This license enables everyone at CLU to reproduce and distribute copyrighted content, in both print and digital form, across campus with the confidence that sharing is being done within copyright laws and CLU’s guidelines.

This license provides faculty, librarians, and research and administrative staff with comprehensive, institution-wide coverage for the reuse of text-based copyrighted content in both print and electronic formats for educational and research purposes.

There are over a million titles (including journals and books) in the CCC’s license repository, and the list continues to grow. The following types of use are covered by the agreement:

  • Coursepacks (print and electronic)
  • Classroom handouts
  • Library reserves (print and electronic)
  • Internal e-mail
  • Electronic course content (i.e., intranet and course management system postings)
  • Research collaboration
  • Administrative communications

For additional information please use the guidelines and links below and links on the left-hand sidebar.

Fair Use, Multiple Copies, and Digital Distribution Guidelines

Section 107 of the Federal Copyright Law Revisions of 1978 provides that “fair use” of a copyrighted work, including use by reproduction in a personal copy, for purposes such as, teaching, scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. Four statutory criteria are applied to determine whether the use made of a work in a particular case constitutes fair use or an infringement of copyright. Generally, however, limited copying from books, periodicals, illustrations, special works, and music is permissible for instructional purposes.

Faculty who intend to make single or multiple copies of copyrighted materials for research, class preparation, classroom use, performance, or recording should consult the department chair, program director, or dean and the complete copyright guidelines contained in Section Three, 5.C. in the faculty handbook.

The following guidelines should be followed when making multiple copies or distributing digital copies of copyrighted material under “fair use:”

  • Distribution is limited to nine spontaneous instances per course per semester. Spontaneous means the material was encountered one to two days before it is used so obtaining permission would be difficult and interrupt the spontaneous nature of teaching.
  • The complete citation and notice of copyright for the material (whether hard copy or digital copy) must included on/in the document.
  • An article, book, or other copyrighted work may only be used one time in one course before requesting permission to use it again in another course.
  • No more than three journal articles or essays may be used form one issue/volume.
  • one chart, graph, diagram, drawing, cartoon or picture per book or per periodical issue
  • No more than 10% of a book may be copied and distributed in print or digitally or an essay, article, or story within a book of 2,500 words or less.
  • Not more than one short poem, article, story, essay or two excerpts may be copied from the same author.
  • A poem less than 250 words may be duplicated or shared in digital format.
  • For long poems, only 250 words may be duplicated in print or distributed in digital format.

The easiest and most legal approach to distributing copyrighted material, especially journal articles and books, is to provide your students with the durable URL to said material. Most of the commercial databases available through Pearson Library provide permanent web addresses to each article or information resource. Further, you may provide a link to any one of the over 96K e-books in Pearson Library’s collection.

If you cannot find a durable URL, an alternative is to use CLU’s Copyright Clearance Center Academic License Database to determine whether the University is licensed to distribute an item in digital or print format.

Searching for materials included in the Academic License database

Remember, if an item is out of print, it is not necessarily in the public domain. Out of print items are often still under copyright, so you will still need permission to make multiple print or digital copies. Search in the Academic License database.

When searching, use the book or publication title, or the ISBN number (more search instructions). If an item is included, you will see information on the distribution options for printing or in digital format. If the item is not included in the CCC Academic License, contact Pearson Library who will assist with obtaining permission to distribute/copy the item.

Find out more information on Academic License.


If you make a personal video recording of a copyrighted program from cable or satellite feed, you may only use that recording one time in one course, and the copy must be destroyed within 45 days of use. If you need assistance with obtaining legal copies of video or audio material, please contact Pearson Library.

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