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Copyright: Copyright & Canvas

Copyright in the LMS at a For-Profit Institution

As a private, for-profit institution the educational exceptions in Code 17 section 110 do not apply to South College because "the educational exceptions under 110 (1) and (2) specifically state that the exceptions apply only to accredited nonprofit [emphasis added] educational institutions" (Ferullo, 2011). 

Instead of relying on the educational exceptions, consider your use of each item in light of the Fair Use provision in Code 17 section 107. Copyright allows instructors to use copyrighted works up to a "reasonable amount" for educational purposes on the condition that such usage is considered fair use. 

Internet Resources (free, open access, not password protected)

In general, it is always better to provide a citation to the original location of a work found online than to upload or embed the work in a Canvas course.  For faculty "in a for-profit environment, the nature of the use will always be commercial" (Carson, 2008).  Each individual student may decide to read or view the work online, download, or print the work for their own personal, educational use.  If a student uses a work, the use is no longer for profit but for education.  

Library Subscription Content

As with articles and other content found online, it is better to provide the citation for a library subscription ebook or journal article for your students to retrieve. However, some library subscriptions' licensing does allow content to be embedded in Canvas. This allowance is determined by each publisher or content provider.  If you would like to know if a library resource (ebook, ejournal article, etc.) may be embedded in a course, please contact Anya McKinney ( to research the licensing provisions for the work(s).

For many ebooks, the library may be able to provide you with a direct link to include in your courses that will redirect students to the library's ebook access point. Please contact Jonathon Hudson ( to request direct ebook URLs.  


The library offers a service called Reserve, which allows faculty to place copyrighted material on hold or "reserve" for the students in a specific course to read or view.  Reserve materials may be placed physically in the library or added to a password protected e-reserve Course Guide on the library website. Please contact your program librarian to set up a physical or electronic reserve collection for your course(s). 



Carson, B. (2008). Legally speaking - Copyright and for-profit educational institutions. Against the Grain, 20(1), 57-61. 

Ferullo, D. L. (2011). Copyright and for-profit colleges. Copyright & New Media Law Newsletter, (15)1, 6-8. ProQuest Central. 

Program Guides