Quick guide to copyright and licensing for e-journals

Copyright and licensing

The University's CLA licence only covers copying or scanning material in printed form. If the material has a digital source then the use (downloading, printing, re-use) is governed by the terms and conditions of the individual licences under which the University subscribes.

Downloading and printing

The normal copyright rules apply: a single copy of one article per issue may be downloaded or printed from an e-journal, for personal use (non-commercial research or private study). Downloading or printing multiple copies or whole journal volumes is not permitted.

Cutting and pasting for teaching or study purposes

Our institutional subscription licences for the e-journal collections listed below permit Oxford University members to include all or part of an article in printed or online teaching materials and coursework providing it is unaltered and appropriately acknowledged.

  • American Chemical Society (ACS)
  • American Institute of Physics (AIP)
  • Annual Reviews
  • BioOne
  • Blackwell Publishing
  • BMJ Publishing Group
  • Cambridge University Press (CUP)
  • Cell Press (Elsevier)
  • Elsevier
  • Institute of Physics (IoP)
  • International Union of Crystallography
  • John Wiley
  • Johns Hopkins University Press
  • JSTOR
  • Nature Publishing Group
  • New England Journal of Medicine
  • Oxford University Press (OUP)
  • Portland Press Limited
  • Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)
  • SAGE Publications
  • Science (AAAS)
  • Springer

This adds up to thousands of journals, all accessible through the OUe-journals list. Any course materials viewed online must be through secure authenticated access (e.g. WebLearn).  Staff may reproduce illustrative material from these e-journals (e.g. figures, tables, structures) for lecture slides or handouts or WebLearn. Acknowledgement should include title of article, author, journal title, volume/issue, publisher, date and copyright holder [ © ]. 

A sample licence

Many of the publishers above abide by a Model Licence negotiated by the JISC for UK Higher Education. Examples of what staff and students may and may not do are given in the JISC guide to the NESLi2 licence.

Images and other permissions requests

Other publishers (such as learned societies) are less likely to extend their standard permissions beyond personal use so you should check their Terms & Conditions for institutional subscribers and contact them if necessary. 

Images, especially photographs or complex illustrations such as anatomical drawings may still require normal permissions requests of publishers (or other copyright holder) as the journal article author is unlikely to own the copyright.

Further information about digital copyright

Oxford Brookes University guidance on providing digital copies

Brunel University guidance on copying from e-journals and copying from websites.

Making direct links to e-journal articles

Teaching staff may wish to create links in WebLearn to e-journal articles. Surrey University has some relevant instructions on linking to online articles.

Full-text databases

The Bodleian Libraries also subscribes to around 30 full-text databases under the JISC Model Licence. This allows University members to include links or extracts in WebLearn or in course packs, with appropriate acknowledgement of the source in each case.

These databases, all accessible via OxLIP, include among others: Archival Sound Recordings; ARTstor; Credo Reference; Early English Books Online; Eighteenth Century Collections Online; Grove Art Online; Grove Music Online; Nineteenth Century Newspapers; Oxford Dictionary of National Biography; Oxford English Dictionary; Oxford Reference Online; Oxford Scholarship Online; Times Digital Archive.

More details can be found via the JISC collections catalogue.

For queries about publishers not mentioned in this guide please contact eresources@bodleian.ox.ac.uk

Further information about copyright

Please refer to the FAQ on copyright or contact  copyright@bodleian.ox.ac.uk

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