The provision of American copyright that is likely most important to educators is the fair use doctrine. The doctrine allows the use for use of portions of copyrighted works in an educational setting without obtaining prior permission from the copyright holder.
The US Copyright Act provides that the "fair use of a copyrighted work for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use) scholarship, or research is not an infringement of copyright." Keep in mind, though, that not all educational uses are fair use.
Page Updated 11/18/04