Educational Uses of Music
Scope of guidelines:
- Emergency copying of printed music
- Multiple copies of excerpts of works
- Single copy of recording
- No provisions for performance rights
- Intended as minimum standard of fair use
UW has not adopted official guidelines for determining fair use.
The guidelines in this section have been abstracted from the legislative notes
associated with the implementation of the current copyright law in 1976. The
text of the legislative notes is available in: Reproduction of Copyrighted Works
by Educators and Librarians
(Library of Congress, Copyright Office, Circular 21, 1995)
About the guidelines
These guidelines address making copies of printed sheet music and recordings
for emergency replacement and academic purposes other than performance.
The stated purpose of the guidelines is to articulate "the minimum and not
the maximum standards of educational fair use under Section 107." The notes
also state that "there may be instances in which copying which does not fall
within the guidelines stated below may nonetheless be permitted under the criteria
of fair use."
How to use the guidelines
Remember that the guidelines are not law. They only address making copies of
printed sheet music and recordings for emergency replacement and academic purposes
other than performance. If you wish to copy or use music for other purposes,
such as using musical selections on a course web page, these guidelines do not
This does not mean your use is not a fair use, only that you must evaluate
your use in accordance with the fair use consideration factors provided in Section
107 of the Copyright Act.
Fair use guidelines for educational uses of music
- Permissible Uses
- Emergency copying to replace purchased copies which for any reason are
not available for an imminent performance provided purchased replacement
copies shall be substituted in due course.
- For academic purposes other than performance, multiple copies of excerpts
of works may be made, provided that the excerpts do not comprise a part
of the whole which would constitute a performable unit such as a section,
movement or aria, but in no case more than 10% of the whole work. The
number of copies shall not exceed one copy per pupil.
- For academic purposes other than performance, a single copy of an
entire performable unit (section, movement, aria, etc.) that is,
- confirmed by the copyright proprietor to be out of print or
- unavailable except in a larger work, may be made by or for a teacher
solely for the purpose of his or her scholarly research or in preparation
to teach a class.
- Printed copies which have been purchased may be edited or simplified provided
that the fundamental character of the work is not distorted or the lyrics,
if any, altered or lyrics added if none exist.
- A single copy of recordings of performances by students may be made for
evaluation or rehearsal purposes and may be retained by the educational
institution or individual teacher.
- A single copy of a sound recording (such as a tape, disc or cassette)
of copyrighted music may be made from sound recordings owned by an educational
institution or an individual teacher for the purpose of constructing aural
exercises or examinations and may be retained by the educational institution
or individual teacher. (This pertains only to the copyright of the music
itself and not to any copyright which may exist in the sound recording.)
- Copying to create or replace or substitute for anthologies, compilations
or collective works.
- Copying of or from works intended to be ''consumable'' in the course of
study or of teaching such as workbooks, exercises, standardized tests and
answer sheets and like material.
- Copying for the purpose of performance, except as in A(1) above.
- Copying for the purpose of substituting for the purchase of music, except
as in A(1) and A(2) above.
- Copying without inclusion of the copyright notice which appears on the