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Copyright: Permissions

Licensed Journals and Databases

The University Library holds many license agreements with publishers and distributors of journals and collections in electronic format. These agreements generally permit reasonable amounts of downloading, printing, linking, or other uses of the licensed content. To determine the allowed uses for articles in a subscription journal:

  • search for the journal title in the Copyright Permissions Look-up tool, below, which also serves as the index to the Library's Complete Journal Holdings
  • look for Terms of Use: View beside the resource containing the journal, and click View.

For example, if you searched for the journal Review of Philosophy and Psychology you would retrieve the following result:


After clicking View, you should see a "License Terms of Use" chart like the one pictured immediately below that lists permitted uses for articles used on E-Reserve/Moodle or in a Coursepack. As well, Scholarly Sharing indicates whether you may share a copy of the article with a research colleague who is not a U of L student, faculty or staff member.

Alternatively, you can look up an article title in Summon and then view its terms of use:

  • Search for an article title in the Summon search box near the top of the Library home page.

  • At the bottom of the article record, click More Detail.

  • In the list of details, look for Terms of Use: and click View.

  • You should now see either a "License Terms of Use" chart similar to the one pictured above for journals in the SpringerLink collection, or a list of sources containing partial or full runs of the journal issues, like the one pictured below.

  • If you do not see "Terms of Use: View" beside a source containing the article you wish to use, in general you can use the article for fair dealing purposes such as education and research if your use complies with the U of L fair dealing guidelines and the use is not prohibited under the website's terms of use or copyright policy. If in doubt, please contact the University Copyright Advisor office.

Note that if you are re-using a Moodle course containing copyrighted material, permissions must be reassessed each time the course materials are used again in a new term as the copyright or licensing status of some materials may have changed. For more information see Reusing Content under the Moodle tab on the Copyright website. The University Copyright Advisor office is happy to assist you with permissions assessment of your Moodle course materials.



The University Library owns or provides licensed access to more than 40,000 e-books.  The number of users who may access an e-book at the same time ranges from a single user to an unlimited number of users.  To determine the permitted number of concurrent users for an e-book, search the e-book title in the Library Catalogue, display the full catalogue record, and look for a field labeled "Terms of Use." For example, the terms of use for the e-book The Evolution of the Sensitive Soul permit "Unlimited user access," but "Two concurrent users" are permitted for The Routledge Companion to Nonprofit Marketing, and only "Single user access" is available for The Paradox of Plenty

You may access the full-text of an e-book by displaying the full catalogue record, and clicking the link labeled "access title online (U of L users only)."  The persistent link to an e-book (or any other title listed in the Library Catalogue) may be located by displaying the full catalogue record, and looking for the "Permanent Link" in the bottom right corner.  Copy and paste the permanent link (e.g., into your document or course management system. In most cases you can also link to a specific e-book chapter (e.g., the chapter entitled "Ontology for land development decisions and plans" in Ontologies for Urban Development.

Instructors should note that if you re-use a Moodle course containing licensed material, the original licensed material should first be deleted. If you wish to use the licensed material again in the new course, new permissions must be gathered or reverified before redownloading the material. Please contact the University Copyright Advisor if you have questions or would like assistance in determining copyright permissions for e-book excerpts in the Library's collections.

Films and Videos

The Copyright Act amendments enacted on June 29, 2012, that came into effect on November 7, 2012, included expansion of the educational exceptions to copyright infringement to cover the public performance of cinematographic works (e.g., films and videos). Section 29.5 (d) of the Copyright Act provides that the public performance of a film or video in class is not an infringement of copyright as long as:

  • the work is not an infringing copy
  • the performance takes place on the University's premises
  • the performance is for educational or training purposes and not for profit, and
  • the audience consists primarily of the University's students, instructors, or individuals responsible for the University's curriculum.
Provided that the above public performance conditions are met, any film or video may be screened in class without copyright owner permission whether the work is owned or licensed by the Library, publicly accessible via the Internet, or owned, borrowed or rented by the instructor.


Prior to November 7, 2012, the University Library held two licensing agreements that allowed for classroom use (noncommercial public performances) of feature films represented by Audio Cine Films Inc. (ACF) and Criterion Pictures. These agreements required the University to report each of its public performance uses regardless of whether the film was owned by the Library, rented from a video store, or acquired through interlibrary loan.

As of March 1, 2013, the Library's Criterion Pictures and ACF licenses have expired and were not renewed. Public performance reporting for classroom screenings of films licensed by Criterion Pictures and ACF is therefore no longer required.

If you have copyright questions about films or videos you wish to use in class or other public performance setting, please contact your subject librarian or the University Copyright Advisor.

Contact Us

University Copyright Advisor office
Phone: 403-332-4472

Rumi Graham
University Copyright Advisor
L1154, University Library

Nanda Stannard
Library Operations Specialist
L1156, University Library

Mechelle McCalla
Library Operations Specialist
L1146, University Library

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