Copyright may be defined as “the legal right granted to an author, a composer, a playwright, a publisher, or a distributor to exclusive publication, production, sale, or distribution of a literary, musical, dramatic, or artistic work.”

Copyright laws are based on the belief that anyone who creates an original, tangible work deserves to be compensated for that work, that compensation encourages more creative works, and that society as a whole benefits from the creative efforts of its members. Copyright laws, therefore, are designed to protect a creator’s right to be compensated and to control how his or her work is used.

Up until this point, I was not familiar with many of the copyright laws. Thus, this module was very informative and helpful as I begin my career in education. I was aware of the basic copyright laws that essentially give credit where it is due but was surprised at the urgency of this topic. Specifically, I would assume that copyright law will have a major effect on education in the future. Especially with the growing usage of technology in the classroom, both teachers and students may run in to some difficulty when researching, citing works, or in their writing. There are several rules to be aware of so that these laws are not violated.

Most experts in copyright law recommend to assume a work is copyrighted and to always ask for permission to use it. A common mistake by both students and educators alike is the belief that utilizing quotation marks will suffice and nullify any misuse of copyright law. Experts say if you properly quote or credit an author’s works, there is no way to be accused of plagiarism.


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