When we are creating learning and teaching materials to support our students, staff often have difficult questions about rights, property and ownership. UTS’s Intellectual Property (IP) Policy (which was revised back in July 2020) provides a very simple and clear view of this. UTS is keeping pace with changes to IP in an increasingly complex world. 

What’s the position? 

The 2020 IP Policy update has clearer statements for research IP, our support for Open Access, student rights, and support for Indigenous rights to traditional knowledge. 

Importantly for learning and teaching, we are now aligned with most staff contracts of employment and with the majority of the Australian university sector. Our policy notes that the university asserts ownership of learning and teaching IP with a number of conditions attached – for instance, where the work was explicitly commissioned. 

Managing intellectual property  

Managing IP should not be hard work. We expect that staff will, as part of the normal work of learning and teaching, ensure that all materials created for this purpose are correctly added to the relevant digital repositories that we use to design our student experience. This is done routinely through systems such as CIS, Kaltura, Zoom recordings and Canvas. Using these UTS-supported systems and tagging resources sensibly as you use them will help us to manage our rights in these materials and protect/acknowledge the rights of others in our teaching. 

The LX.lab has lots of great resources to help you use these systems effectively. For example, in uploading video resources you have created to Kaltura, the ‘My Media’ menu includes a description of the resource and a field to tag it to enhance searchability and reuse. 

Of course, sometimes it can be hard to note possible ‘other rights’ in the materials we aim to use. That’s the challenge of copyright acknowledgement that the Library can help you with. All staff should be aware of copyright issues and access conditions that might apply to the materials they are uploading to use. Here again, good practices to support this work are captured in the Library Guide: Manage your Content tool

UTS is a hub for creativity and innovation, and so it is imperative we protect and care for the intangible creations of human intellect in the same way that we do for our physical spaces, equipment and people. 

For more information you can read the Intellectual Property Policy in full on the Governance Support Unit website. 

Feature image by Toby Burrows

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