Copyright and Studying

As a student you will want to photocopy or download material, e.g. book chapters, journal articles, information or images web pages etc. This material is likely to be covered by UK copyright law, which limits the amount of material that you can legally copy. Copyright basics gives more information.

Infringement of copyright by University of Leicester staff and students is taken seriously and further action will be taken if we become aware of infringing activity.

What can I legally photocopy?

TickYou can copy a 'fair' amount for your own private study, research or critical review. Although fair is not defined, please bear the following points in mind:

  • any copying must not impact on the commercial interests of the rightsholder
  • only one copy can be made
  • you must limit the amount copied to only that which you require
  • you must not pass your copy on to anyone else

This applies if you are using a photocopier, scanner or any other device.

Cross You must not copy material for anyone else, it has to be for your own personal use.

What can I legally download and/or print from the Internet for personal use?

Tick Material on the web is usually copyright protected. In the absence of any clear guidance consider applying the 'fair' copying terms above.

The University Library provides many electronic journals, books and databases. These are supplied subject to licence agreements with individual publishers. Generally you can download and/or print ONE copy of a journal article or book chapter for personal use.

Cross Do not download works in their entirety or systematically, for example an entire journal issue.
Cross Do not share your username and password with anybody.
Cross Do not email or transfer legally downloaded material to anyone else.
Tick The Creative Commons symbol Creative Commons License iconhelps identify sites that allow legal sharing.
Cross Material on the web can be there illegally, for example pirated material. Do not download or link to material which is clearly infringing.
Cross Do not use "peer-to-peer" file-sharing software.
Tick You must adhere to the University's IT Services Regulations.

What about material provided by my lecturer?

CrossCopies provided by your lecturer or in a course pack should not be further copied as this would break the University's copyright licences.

What about using copied material in assessed work or a dissertation?

Tick You can include copied material in your assessed work for your assessor, but it must be fully referenced, or you could be accused of plagiarism as well as infringing copyright. For help with referencing visit Citing references and see your departmental guidelines for more information on avoiding plagiarism.
Tick Diagrams, illustrations, photographs, sound recordings and film extracts can be included in assessed work, with full acknowledgement.
Tick Short excerpts of printed music can be included in assessed work provided it is not for performance purposes.
Cross Assessed work which includes copied material can only be given to your assessors. It cannot be used in other ways, for example in future publications, in exhibitions, or given to a potential employer, unless permission has been granted by the rights holder.

What about photographs and other images?

There are some sources you can use which make images available for use under certain conditions without you needing to seek individual permission.

What if I create web pages?

Publishing web pages using University of Leicester servers and virtual learning environments is governed by the University's Internet Code of Practice

Tick You can link to an external web site
Cross Do not use frames that make it look as if someone else’s web site is your work.

Does copyright apply to work I have created?

Tick Yes. Your essays, emails, exam scripts, dissertations and other original material you create in the form of projects or assignments all constitute copyright material. You are the rights holder, but the University requires you to submit copies as a course requirement for the purpose of marking and assessment, and may require you to deposit copies of material in a departmental collection or the University Library.

Further Infomation

For more information please Contact us.

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