Fair Dealing Guidelines

The University of Alberta Fair Dealing Guidelines are intended for faculty and staff whose copying is done on behalf of the institution. Examples of institutional use include course materials made available to students and materials distributed to staff for work purposes.

The purpose of the Fair Dealing Guidelines is to provide a simple and straightforward approach to making determinations, under specific limited circumstances, about applying the fair dealing exception to copyright infringement. The fair dealing exception is described in s. 29 of the Copyright Act.

With the increased availability of licensed digital resources through the University of Alberta Library, as well as the increased availability of openly licensed materials, the need to rely on fair dealing for institutional purposes has been diminishing. The Guidelines (updated in March 2023) address where fair dealing, and the application of these Guidelines, fit within the current model of access to materials.

University of Alberta Fair Dealing Guidelines

These Fair Dealing Guidelines are not intended to be relied upon in the case of personal copying (e.g., students, faculty, or employees making photocopies or scans for their own study or research purposes). In such cases, the responsibility for determining whether a specific dealing might be considered fair is left to the individual user.

To learn about fair dealing and its applications, see the Fair Dealing section of this website.