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Copyright refers to laws created to protect the rights of individuals to their materials, for a specified period of time, so that they may obtain commercial benefit from the works and have control over how their works are used. These laws originated in the Constitution of the United States, but have been modified and expanded with subsequent legislation.

Most intellectual works are copyrighted from the moment they are created into a fixed form. There need be no notice or registration of copyright. Legal proceedings are being brought against those who use information and/or products without permission.  Because copying information, graphics, software, music, movies, or photographs is so easily accomplished, it is important for faculty, staff, and students at Sacramento State to become aware of what usages are allowed for education so that responsible choices can be made.

Fair Use guidelines, the TEACH Act, and the DMCA provide for reasonable access to works for the purpose of furthering knowledge. Links to these and other resources are provided here to introduce and further educate the Sacramento State community about copyright.

Getting Started

  1. View the Know Your Copy Rights ™ brochure (PDF) to find tips for faculty and teaching assistants in higher education.
  2. Read the TEACH Act chart (PDF) [] — a summary for educators.
  3. Check out the Fair Use Worksheet (PDF) to see if your proposed use falls within the fair use guidelines.
  4. For more in-depth knowledge select one or more sites from the list of Resources.

Educational Permissions

The reprinting of materials for coursepacks is not considered fair use. Services such as the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) and XanEdu can prepare coursepacks for you and obtain the necessary permissions. Fees vary depending upon the cost of copyright permission, copying, binding, and processing fees. Students bear the cost of the coursepacks – the average cost can range from $5.00 to $25.00.




For a variety of Web sites that can help you with copyright and fair use, please visit the Resources webpage.

Last updated: June 17, 2015   




Academic Technology & Creative Services (ATCS) | California State University, Sacramento
AIRC 3005 | 6000 J Street | Sacramento, CA 95819-6143 | (916) 278-3370