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KCC > Faculty & Staff > Copyright > TEACH Act Guidelines

TEACH Act Guidelines

The Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization (TEACH) Act updates copyright law in the area of digital online education and, if the requirements are met, facilitates the use of copyrighted materials in the digital online education efforts without having to obtain prior permission from the copyright owner. The TEACH Act is a compromise between the needs of academia to make free use of copyrighted materials as an efficient and effective teaching tool and the needs of copyright holders to protect the value of their work effort. However the TEACH Act imposes requirements on the use of copyrighted materials in online education.

The TEACH Act is more restrictive than the law allowing face-to-face instructional use of copyrighted materials. For the uses that fall outside the scope of TEACH, the user should either seek permission of the copyright holder or evaluate the use under the fair use exemption of the copyright law.


The TEACH Act includes

  • Performances of nondramatic literary works or musical works
  • Performances of reasonable portions of any other work
  • Display of any other work in an amount comparable to that typically displayed in a live classroom setting

but not

  • Digital education works (works produced or marketed primarily for performance/display as part of mediated instructional activities transmitted via digital networks)
  • Unlawful copies (copies that you know or should reasonably know were not lawfully made or acquired)


Why is it being shown?  When is it taking place?

  • It is an integral part of the class session and
  • directly related and of material assistance to the teaching content

How is it being transmitted?

  • Access is limited to students enrolled in the course and
  • Retention in accessible form for longer than a class session and
  • No interference with copyright holder's technological measures that prevent such retention and dissemination

Converting analog materials to digital format

  • No digital version available to the institution or
  • The available digital version is technologically protected to prevent TEACH Act use

TEACH Act copyright notice

If copyrighted works are being used under the TEACH Act, the following student notice must be included on course materials:

The materials on this course website or in Canvas are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated.