Role of Librarians

Libraries manage, store and disseminate many information resources for campus communities in support of the university's curriculum. Rod Library's information resources are a combination of print and electronic formats. Rod Library will send print books and copies of articles (subject to U.S. copyright law) to distance learners who request materials. Distance learners can request books and articles through the Rod Library’s Library Services for Distance Learners website. In recent years, the library has acquired more full text information through licensed databases, ejournals and ebooks. Additional library services to distance education students include course reserves and interlibrary loan services.

Negotiators of Licenses for Campus Databases and Other E-resources
Rod Library negotiates licenses for most of its online databases, ejournals, and ebooks. Students may directly access the full text or full content of many articles and books by going through the licensed resources. Off-campus students have to log into licensed library resources using their university CatID before they can access the full text or full content. Linking straight to a work in a licensed resource is often an effective means for avoiding copyright concerns since students are accessing the information through the licensed resource.

Library Course Reserves Services
Rod Library offers print and electronic course reserves where faculty members can place books and articles on course reserves for their students. The library uses the fair use portion of the copyright law when placing items that don't have copyright permission on course reserves. This usually means that limited amounts of information may be placed on course reserves for limited amounts of time. Students can access electronic copies through the library's homepage under the “Course Reserves” tab. Students can view the works that have been placed on electronic course reserves after logging into the course reserves system. Library staff can place links to many works found in licensed resources in the electronic course reserves system.

Library Interlibrary Loan Services
Rod Library offers an interlibrary loan service where books and articles that are not owned by the library are obtained from other libraries. Distance learners should request all interlibrary loan items through Rod Library’s Library Services for Distance Learners website. Articles are often copied and sent to the Rod Library (subject to the fair use portion of U.S. copyright law). If the specific article does not fall within the library's interpretation of copyright law, the library will attempt to purchase the item from a document delivery company. In this case, copyright royalties are paid to the legal copyright owner and fair use is not used.

Fair Use Provisions of the U.S. Copyright Law
If digitization and dissemination of certain information is not covered by the TEACH Act, faculty members may sometimes use the fair use provisions of the copyright law to use portions of copyrighted material in their classes. Fair use allows for the legal copying, digitalization and dissemination of limited amounts of material if no copyright permission has been obtained.

The U.S. copyright law is open to interpretation and there is no absolute "safe" amount of material that can be copied and disseminated using fair use. Each case or situation stands alone where the four fair use factors (purpose, nature, amount, and effect) must be weighed together to determine if the use of a copyrighted work falls under fair use or whether copyright law has been violated.


TEACH Act is supported by UNI's Rod Library, Educational Technology, Continuing Education and
The Office of SponsoredPrograms

If you have any other questions or concerns please contact the TEACH Act Committee


Instituional Policy Makers Responsibilities | Information Technology Officials Responsibilities | Instructor Responsibilities
Role of Librarians
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