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Open licenses

If copyrighted material has been posted under one of the many open licenses (Creative Commons is one popular example), you don't need permission from the copyright owner to make use of the materials, you just need to follow the restrictions of the license. These restrictions frequently include attribution (properly citing the material), and can include restrictions on commercial use or how the material can be adapted or changed.

Most open access scholarly publications (from open access journals, books, or conference proceedings) are posted under an open license.

There are some great tools for finding Creative Commons licensed material and open educational resources.


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  •     Gail McMillan
  • Gail M McMillan
  • Director, Digital Library and Archive
  • 540-231-9252
  • gailmac@vt.edu
  • 2036 Newman Library (0434)
    560 Drillfield Drive
    Blacksburg, VA 24061