T.E.A.C.H. Act Checklist

  • In 2002, Congress passed the T.E.A.C.H. Act (Technology, Education, and Copyright Harmonization Act) in an effort to make explicit how copyright works in online, distance education. Previously, when U.S. copyright law applied to the classroom, it applied only to face-to-face settings.

    While the T.E.A.C.H. Act gave educators some rights in the online, distance education environment corresponding to the rights enjoyed in the face-to-face classroom, the amount of material that may be used in online and distance education classrooms is much more restricted. 

    Use the following checklist to see if your class satisfies T.E.A.C.H. Act requirements.

    • ___ My institution is a nonprofit accredited educational institution or a governmental agency.
    • ___ It has a policy on the use of copyrighted materials.
    • ___It provides accurate information to faculty, students and staff about copyright.
    • ___Its systems will not interfere with technological controls within the materials I want to use.
    • ___The materials I want to use are specifically for students in my class.
    • ___Only those students will have access to the materials.
    • ___The materials will be provided at my direction during the relevant lesson.
    • ___The materials are directly related and of material assistance to my teaching content.
    • ___My class is part of the regular offerings of my institution.
    • ___I will include a notice that the materials are protected by copyright.
    • ___I will use technology that reasonably limits the students' ability to retain or further distribute the materials.
    • ___I will make the materials available to the students only for a period of time that is relevant to the context of a class session.
    • ___I will store the materials on a secure server and transmit them only as permitted by this law.
    • ___I will not make any copies other than the one I need to make the transmission.
    • ___The materials are of the proper type amount the law authorizes:
      • Entire performances of nondramatic literary and musical works
      • Reasonable and limited parts of a dramatic literary, musical, or audiovisual works
      • Displays of other works, such as images, in amounts similar to typical displays in face-to-face teaching
    • ___The materials are not among those the law specifically excludes from its coverage:
      • Materials specifically marketed for classroom use for digital distance education
      • Copies I know or should know are illegal
      • Textbooks, coursepacks, electronic reserves and similar materials typically purchased individually by the students for independent review outside the classroom or class session
    • ___If I am using an analog original, I checked before digitizing it to be sure:
      • I copied only the amount that I am authorized to transmit
      • There is no digital copy of the work available except with technological protections that prevent my using it for the class in the way the statute authorizes.