As a postgraduate student it is important to have a basic understanding of copyright to ensure the academic integrity of your research and to protect your rights in the work you create.
Theses and dissertations
AUT requires students to deposit their research outputs (thesis, dissertation & some creative outputs) into AUT’s open access repository, Tuwhera. To publically publish your research you must have permission for all copyright protected third party material used in your work. This includes; tables, graphs, diagrams, large parts of text, photographs and social media posts.
Gaining copyright permission
- Identify the copyright owner of a work. Look for a name on a work or check the “terms and conditions” or “copyright” link on the webpage if there is one. You can also do a reverse Google image search for images.
- Send the Copyright Permission Letter template to the copyright owner.
- If you can't find the copyright owner, or get no response, consider using an alternative image.
Gaining permission from academic journals
Follow this process for images, tables, diagrams or large parts of text from online academic journals.
- On the online article or book look for the Rights, Copyright & Permissions, Request permissions link or something similar. Click this link and follow the instructions.
- You may be taken to the copyright clearance centre called RightsLink. Fill out all of the appropriate details.
- Some journals require a fee to use tables, diagrams or graphs from articles.
What can you use without permission?
- Any images or material you've created yourself - you own the copyright to this.
- Any material used for the purposes of internal assessment, with attribution.
- Any material used for criticism and review or news reporting, with attribution, under the Fair Dealing exceptions.
- Works assigned a Creative Commons licence.
- Any work where copyright does not exist.
- Any work where copyright has expired and the work is in the public domain.
Copyright for researchers workshop handout (PDF)