Research institutions have to take care to obtain the rights to use their teaching modules from project developers, to secure subsequent use in teaching units and in developing these further. Apart from customary classroom lectures, more and more educational institutions offer distance learning – also as Internet services. In order to provide e-learning offerings, suitable teaching concepts and contents are required to convey knowledge this way. Against the backdrop of copyright and trademark law regarding contents, compiling e-learning concepts and materials presents complex licence law issues. For example, research institutions have to take care to obtain the rights to use their teaching modules from project developers, to secure subsequent use in teaching units and in developing these further.
Attention must be paid not only to the question of the appropriate rights, but also to what extent they have to be obtained through contracts. The terms of licencing conditions have to be evaluated in most cases individually, because the legal evaluation may turn out differently depending on the contracting party and the envisaged purpose of the contents. This means acquaintance with some basic rules is essential for the realisation of e-learning projects. It is, for example, vital that we differentiate between the application of teaching materials especially developed for an e-learning project, e.g. by a duly appointed law teacher, and the integration of external materials, such as image, audio and film, into a teaching module.
The Institute has developed an overview of the topic in order to convey to involved parties the general outline of what they need to know. On behalf of the project OLIM run by Arbeitsstelle für wissenschaftliche Weiterbildung [Working group on Further Training for Academics, AWW] at the University of Hamburg, an information brochure has been published. Further information is available through Till Kreutzer.