Skip to main content
Accessibility Information
Shapiro Library

Open Educational Resources (OER)

This guide is intended to provide SNHU faculty/staff information and support in researching open educational resources and copyright/licensing. If you have comments or suggestions for the guide, please contact Heather Blicher at h.blicher@snhu.edu.

What is the TEACH Act?


The TEACH Act stands for the Technology, Education and Copyright Harmonization Act of 2002. The purpose of the TEACH Act is to provide online classes a way to perform or display copyrighted materials. However, there are very strict requirements to invoke the TEACH Act for copyrighted materials.

What is not covered under the TEACH Act?

  • Anything that's produced and sold for performance or display as part of a digitally transmitted mediated instructional activity. This you have to buy or license. This includes videos that were created as instructional materials and are available for purchase in a streaming format.
  • Illegally acquired copies of materials. For example, you cannot go to a movie theatre and digitally film a movie to show in your online class.

What is covered under the TEACH Act providing that other conditions are met?

  • Complete performances of non-dramatic literary and musical works
  • Limited portions of other works

What sort of other conditions are required?

  • The work must be an integral part of the class session and relates to the content being taught
  • Must be analogous to what you would use in a face-to-face class
  • Materials cannot be used for entertainment purposes
  • Materials cannot replace a textbook
  • Must be used within the learning management system (LMS) so that only students enrolled in the class has access
  • Has to be provided in a format that prevents downloading and saving by students for future viewing
  • You need to provide a statement to students that the work is copyrighted

Adapted from ALA's TEACH Act Summary of the Report on Copyright and Digital Distance Education.