• Noni Harrison


Updated: Jan 2, 2021

What is copyright?

Copyright protects works not ideas, concepts, styles or techniques. Rights relating to creative works that entitle the owner to reproduce, show or perform the material in public. Copyright owners also have the right to “prevent others from reproducing or communicating their work without their permission” (National Copyright Unit, 2016, para. 2). Owners may sell these rights to others.

In Australia, copyright is automatic and does not need to be applied for. Additionally, no copyright notice is required to be displayed.

Copyright in schools:

Fair dealings

An exemption to copyright infringement: A reasonable portion may be used for research, study, criticism/review, news, parody or satire without permission.

Reasonable portion

An article from a periodical

More than one article on the same subject from a periodical

15 pages of a literary work from an anthology

10% of the pages or 1 chapter in a literary, dramatic or musical work in hard copy and electronic form

These same limits apply to material published on the LMS. The copyright owner must be acknowledged. Referencing is required.

Teachers may not make multiple copies of a work for their students’ research or study. Multiple copies may be made using statutory educational licences; specifically, the Statutory Text and Artistic License, with application and payment through the Copyright Agency Limited (CAL). This covers hard and electronic copies. Each year a sample of schools are audited to determine the license fees payable to CAL. These licences cover photocopying, scanning, emailing, and publication on the school intranet.

Films played for non-educational purposes is allowed if the school is covered by the Co-Curricular Licence with Roadshow Public Performance Licensing or must gain permission from the non-theatrical distributor (National Copyright Unit, 2016).

The Music department is responsible for APRA and AMCOS education licences.

Students with disabilities

Accessible format copies may be made for students with a disability. There are no restrictions on the format that can be created. An attempt must be made to obtain a commercially available copy first.

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines apply to all institutions and organisations in Australia and is required under the law.


National Copyright Unit. 2016. Smartcopying. Retrieved from http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/


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