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BIO323 Research Skills Guide: Copyright

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Copying the work of others

The work of others is protected by copyright. You generally need permission to copy another person's work, to perform works in public, adapt or email a copy, or, upload it to the web.  The Copyright Act describes some exceptions, under which you can copy a reasonable portion of the work of others without their permission for the purpose of:

  • research or study; criticism or review; parody or satire; reporting the news; judicial proceedings

These are the Fair Dealing exceptions. Students can rely on the first two defences to copy for their own use or for assessment, but cannot communicate or publish further without gaining the permission of the copyright owner.

How much can you copy?

The Fair Dealing provisions of the Act allow you to make a single copy of a reasonable portion for your own use or include with an assessment for the purpose of Research or Study, Criticism or Review. 


  • 1 chapter or up to 10% of the pages in a book
  • 10% of the words in an unpaginated work (such as electronic resource with no page numbering)
  • one article in an issue of a journal, more than one if they are required for the same course of study or research
  • up to 15 pages from an anthology
  • pictures, animations, graphics and diagrams may be copied also
  • reasonable portion of a sound recording or video (amount not specified, provided use is fair)
  • Australian radio or television broadcast

Articles can not be posted to the forum or emailed to other students, it is OK to provide links or references.

CSU provides access to electronic books, journals and audiovisual material for education and research use. Use of these resources is governed by licence agreements which restrict use to current CSU students and staff.   

You can copy, print or download electronic resources for your private study and research. If you wish to publish or use these resources for any other purpose you will need to obtain permission from the copyright owners. Contact the publisher for further information.

Copyright video

This short film on copyright by Federation University Australia in collaboration with GoTAFE is aimed at students in raising awareness towards copyright and improving their understanding of copyright.

Find an answer


There may be times when you are doing your assessments when you are not sure if an image or a resource you have found can be used legally.

This 'Find an Answer' resource from the Australian Copyright Council might be helpful.

photo credit: MikeBlogs via photopin cc

Internet Copyright infringement

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Internet Copyright Infringement
Source: Copyright Infringement: Myths vs Facts from

Copyright as a CSU student

We have some useful resources and information that will help you to navigate copyright issues while you are studying with CSU.

Charles Sturt University acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands on which its campuses are located, paying respect to Elders, both past and present, and extend that respect to all First Nations Peoples.

Charles Sturt University is an Australian University, TEQSA Provider Identification: PRV12018. CRICOS Provider: 00005F.