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Copyright: Copyright in teaching

About copyright and teaching

This section offers information about copyright and teaching.

Teacher has copyright to the works he/she makes and has right to decide how the works may be used.

Student has a copyright to his/her work and using this work, always requires permission from the student. Using student’s work, for example reading out essay, doesn’t mean that the permission should be asked from every student. Although student can forbid use of his/her work if necessary.

Use of materials based on contracts

Different licences help to use copyrighted materials for educational purposes. Rectors' Conference of Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences Arene ry, Universities Finland UNIFI and Kopiosto have made an agreement on digital copying.

More information:

Creative Commons

User right can be given by using certain licences. Within these licences the creator offers part of his/her rights to anyone using the work on certain determined conditions. One of the most common licences is Creative Commons and it can be used with different kinds of works.

More information:

The use of materials in teaching

When the work is published, it can be shown during teaching, except film works or plays. The same rules concern digital works as well as physical works.


It is allowed to copy publications for research and education under Kopiosto licence. The copied material can be included to the teacher's educational material. Licence allows also to print material from the internet for research and education purposes.

Printing and photocopying

Photocopying requires that organisation has a valid Kopiosto licence for photocopying. Licence is for domestic and international publications and it covers also printing. According to the licence, one should mainly use the original printed materials and making photocopies is only allowed when the original printed material is not available.

Openly shared and licenced material can be photocopied. Student can print and photocopy material for private use only. In teaching publication can be printed or photocopied maximum 20 pages (and not over half of the publication) for the students’ use. Photocopies can’t be subject to a fee. Photocopying workbook is prohibited.


Published work is allowed to present in teaching for example playing music from the CD. The audience should be in the same space as the presented work.

Photograph can be considered as a work. Still, many photographs are not original enough that they would be called work. These kind of photographs are also protected: teacher can project the photograph for students and use the photograph in the teaching material if organisation has a valid Kopiosto licence.

Presenting music or audio record is allowed. Record can be reproduced for example from the CD or internet. Presenting music publicly requires permission for example from the artist and the producer.

Film works and plays can’t be presented without permission. In videos it is always considered if the work is film work or not. For this subject there is no practical guidelines. Permission for presenting film works can be acquired from APFI ry and M&M Viihdepalvelu Oy (International film works)

Web page which doesn’t include moving pictures can be presented in teaching.

Social media is perceived as a published work so it can be presented in teaching. The material should be legally shared and privacy should be considered when using the material.

Saving presentations

Teacher’s or student’s presentations can be saved without permission only in temporary use and with connection to the teaching. Recordings can be made for example for presentation’s evaluation purpose. Recordings can’t be stored and they should be deleted afterwards. Recordings can be shown only to those who were present during the teaching. Recordings shown via remote access requires permission from the recording’s creator and performer. 


It is allowed to distribute only openly licenced and shared material for example via e-mail. Distributing other kind of work is forbidden without permission.


Openly licenced material can be shared without permission. In the teaching material it is allowed to attach the link to the work. It is forbidden to save works in the organisation’s server or embedding work as a part of e-material.

It is allowed to give students the link to the material e.g. youtube-link, so that students can view the material themselves. This is regarded as private use. Linking must be made so that viewer understands that the material is in the other platform than the teaching material.


Toikkanen, Tarmo & Oksanen, Ville (2011). Opettajan tekijänoikeusopas. Helsinki: Finn Lectura

Photographs in the educational material

Photographs can be used in the educational material based on the picture citation and scientific representation. It is allowed to take published photographs to be used in scientific representation as far as the photograph relates to the text. One should take into account, that allthoug university teaching is generally regarded as scientific, it is not certain if it in all situations can be considered as scientific.

Photographs should be supplementary in the educational material and the citation must be done correctly. Educational material which contains picture citation can't be used commercially but it can be distributed in the internet.

Read more (in Finnish only):


Classroom teaching can become virtual if the lecture can be viewed online or if it is saved and shared for students. The lectures should be regarded as written works so sharing and saving the lectures requires permission from the teacher.

If the teacher and the students are recognizable in the recording, there should be permission from all of them that the recording can be shared or viewed online.

E-Learning material can contain links to the internet web pages. Embedding media as a part of teaching material is only allowed if the service provider gives an opportunity to embed media.

Reference: Toikkanen, Tarmo & Oksanen, Ville (2011). Opettajan tekijänoikeusopas. Helsinki: Finn Lectura