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ECU enacted a new Copyright Regulation in 2013. This regulation updates and expands the scope of the prior copyright policy from the Faculty Manual. For quick reference, a summary of the regulation follows; you are advised to read the entire regulation rather than rely on the unofficial summary.

  • All students, faculty, and staff must comply with US Copyright Law.
  • The position of Copyright Officer exists to advise the ECU community on complying with Copyright Law. The Office of University Councel (attorneys) is also available to address more complex copyright compliance questions.
  • A Copyright Committee exists for a variety of purposes -- refer to the next column and to the Regulation for details.
  • Works produced at ECU or by ECU employees and students should be evaluated to determine who owns the copyright: the individuals creating them, ECU, and/or outside entities. The Regulation has detailed explanations; the table below attempts to simplify these for the most frequently occuring cases.
  • Works to which ECU owns the copyright or works that are of uncertain status should be reviewed by one's supervisors and ECU's Copyright Officer before the work is released for distribution or publication. The Copyright Officer will determine ownership and provide further guidance. If ownership is still in question, the Copyright Committee can be consulted.
  • If the copyright of the work is owned personally (i.e. not by ECU), the creators are free to use and release the work as desired, provided ECU is not used to market the work. The creators, if they so choose, may request that ECU's Office of Technology Transfer advise and assist them in their attempt to commercialize their work.
  • If ECU owns the copyright, ECU's Office of Technology Transfer will be informed. If the OTT decides to commercialize the work, a profit sharing scheme determines compensation to the creators, their departments, and the University. The OTT can also decide to assign the University's copyright to the creators.
  • ECU has the right to retain and use data gathered by ECU employees and students.

ECU Copyright Committee

The ECU Copyright Regulation provides for a Copyright Committee to advise the University on copyright issues, to assist in the promotion of copyright information, and to consider appeals of copyright related decisions whenever such might occur.

Members of the Copyright Committee are appointed by the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies from nominations s/he receives. Membership of the Committee for 2014-2015 is listed below.

Marti Van Scott
Technology Transfer, Committee Chair
Vice Chancellor Representative

Jeanne Hoover
Joyner Library
Chair of Faculty Delegate

Huabin Luo
Public Health
Faculty Senator

Mark Moore
DE & Learning Technology Committee

Megan Janke
Recreation & Leisure Studies
Research & Creative Activity Committee

Dawn King
Facilities Services
Staff Senate Representative

Chris Holden
Joyner Library
At Large

Kristal Gauthier
Advising Center, College of Allied Health
Staff Senate Representative

Kim Higdon
Staff Senate Representative

Graduate Student
Graduate School

Postdoctoral Scholar
Post Doctoral Affairs

Ex officio and additional non-voting members may also be appointed by the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies to serve on the Copyright Committee. Offices listed with an asterisk are options appointments. Ex officio membership for 2016-2017 is listed below.

Joseph Thomas
Joyner Library
Copyright Officer & Academic Affairs

Wendy Creasey
Academic Computing

Paul Zigas
Office of the University Attorney
University Counsel

Aaron Lucier
Housing Operations
Student Affairs

Technology Transfer


Health Sciences

Research & Graduate Studies

ECU Copyright Regulation: Who owns your work?

Determining who owns the copyright to work created at ECU can be complex. Generally speaking, all work created by staff members and non-faculty EPA belongs to ECU. The chart below is my attempt to give general examples for faculty and students.

Who Owns? Faculty Students
Teaching or Learning

Faculty own course materials, lecture notes and slides, created handouts, and other such materials.

ECU has a right to retain and use copies when faculty leave.

Students own their classwork, papers, and projects.

Tests and lecture notes and recordings made are for personal use only. Sharing widely is not permitted.

Research, Publications, Prsentations, Performances

Faculty own their research unless extensive ECU resource were used and/or the funding agency claims rights.

Faculty own their publication unless they sign over their rights to the publishers.

Joint publications, if not woned by the publisher, belog to each author.

Research performed as part of a campus job usually belongs to ECU, the supervising faculty member, and/or the granting agency.

Independent research is owned by the student. ECU claims right to use any data.

Publications belong to the student unless signed over or shared as joint authors.


Committee work usually belongs to ECU or the agency for which the work was created (e.g. the national association or the journal editors or publisher).

ECU committee work belongs to ECU.

Student club material belong to each student involved in creating it.

Other service work needs clarifying.