Archive for February, 2011

Online Courses and Copyright

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

Can I post this video online? Can I scan chapters of the textbook so students can view them from Blackboard? These are some of the questions I receive related to copyright and fair use. Sometimes, the answers are not cut and dry when deciding if and how much of a work can legally be used in an online course. Some of the rules differ from a face-to-face class.

Here are a few resources at CFCC to help you determine how and when you can use certain works:

Briefly, here are six steps you can follow (move to the next step if the answer is “no”):

  1. Does your school own a license for the material?
  2. Is the material in public domain?
  3. Does the material hold a Creative Commons license?
  4. Is your use covered by TEACH Act?
  5. Will your use likely be covered under Fair Use?
  6. Can you obtain permission from the copyright holder?

Please note that the library does own a license for many resources, so this is a good place to start. The license will control how to use the materials.

If you would like a brief introduction to copyright basics, view this short Copyright Basics Video from the Copyright Clearance Center.

New “Paste from Word” tool for Bb makes your life easier!

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

Pasting content from a Word document can result in problems, including display errors, formatting gone awry, and strange characters appearing on the page. This is a result of excessive code use by Microsoft that other programs cannot interpret correctly


We have installed a new mashup tool in Blackboard to help resolve this issue without requiring re-typing items into the text editor or using another tool to strip the code. Better yet, it’s simple to use! Click the link below to learn more.

Learn how to use the Paste from Word tool.  🙂

Also, please note that the YouTube mashup tool has been fixed!

Blackboard Friday: Problems/Solutions, continued

Friday, February 4th, 2011

Here’s a list of the current issues noted from our most recent Blackboard update:

  • Menu items in unavailable courses might show “hidden” when they are not
  • YouTube mashups not working This was resolved on 2/10!
  • Clicking locked test attempt takes instructor to another student’s test
  • Calendars and Due Dates in Calendar module display incorrectly