Can I Use That?

You’ve found the perfect article, book chapter, image or video and you want to use it for your course. Can you?

Yes! Wait, No! Well… maybe. It can be complicated. In most cases, you can create link in your myLesley course that takes your students to the author’s website. However, you may not have permission to make a copy of it and distribute it to your students… even for education purposes. Fair Use provides you with an exception for educational use, but you still need to balance the Four Factors of Fair Use to make sure your situation applies.  

  1. Purpose of Use – Is your use of the work transformative or different from way it was used before?
  2. Nature of the work – Facts are not protected by copyright, but creative works are.
  3. Amount of work used – Using only the amount of the work needed or very small amounts
  4. Effect on the market value of the work – Will your use of the work impact the ability of the author to make money or sell copies of the work?

Fair use is not black and white which is why it’s so confusing. The video below provides a good overview for instructors on what might be possible without getting into legal hot water. The University of Texas Libraries Copyright Crash Course and Digital ID’s Can I Use That? Creative Commons Guide are great resources for learning more. When in doubt, Ask a Lesley Librarian. They can help determine fair use or find an alternative.  



12 Days of Learning: Library Tips

Atomic Learning has created the 12 Days of Learning, a series of articles designed to kick off resolutions to keep learning in the new year. We thought this was a great idea and have decided borrow (shamelessly steal) it and do our own. Today we’ll look to our colleagues at the Lesley Library.

Keyword Searching in Library Databases
Learn how to use keywords, AND, OR and truncation to create successful and more powerful searches in the library databases.


Scholarly Sources and Evaluating Information
Learn more about how to determine if a source is scholarly and will it be a useful resource.

For more assistance with these topics, check with Ask a Librarian.


ARTstor Digital Library: A place of visual primary sources

ARTstor is a digital library full of images for you to use for classroom instruction, especially if you want to integrate visual literacy. Its title can be a bit deceiving but ARTstor’s true focus is less about discipline and more about giving educators online access to over 1.8 million authoritative visual primary sources. You and your students will discover content from a wide range of museums, archives, libraries, and other types of cultural heritage institutions that span various time periods, movements, and cultures.

Check out what collections are available, Some of the collections used with students doing research include:

Not only does this educational technology have visual resource collections, it allows easy integration into your online classroom environments. Some great tech features include curating groups of images sharable in Blackboard, links to share on blogs, and generate of PowerPoint presentations. Any images collected using ARTstor’s image group feature automatically live in the system so you never have to worry about losing them or your image presentation. Please be advised that ARTstor registration is required to use the tool!

If you want to learn how to use ARTstor there are a number of resources that come in various formats ranging from videos, written instructions, and in-person help. Visit the websites below or find help in at the Moriarty Library 

ARTstor Help Resources
Moriarty Library’s ARTstor Help Guide
ARTstor’s YouTube
ARTstor’s Knowledge Base

Contact a Librarian for help!
Kate Thornhill, MLIS
Research and Instruction Librarian for Digital Scholarship
Moriarty Library