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Acceptable Use of Electronic Resources Policy

Drexel University contracts with a variety of vendors and publishers to provide users with thousands of electronic resources (databases, eBooks, eJournals, etc.) paid for by Drexel University Libraries.

In addition to paying for these resources, the Libraries typically negotiate license agreements that stipulate how and by whom they may be used. If license terms are violated, licensors usually have the right to temporarily suspend access for the entire university community.  In some cases, licenses can be permanently revoked.

You can help prevent problems with our electronic resource providers by adhering to "good practice" and avoiding improper use.

Here are some good rules of thumb:

making limited print or electronic copies (such as single articles) systematic or substantial printing, copying or downloading (such as entire journal issues or books)
using for personal, instructional or research needs selling or re-distributing content, or providing it to an employer (this includes a co-op employer)
sharing with current Drexel faculty, staff and students sharing with people other than current Drexel faculty, staff and students
posting links to specific content posting actual content or articles to web sites or listservs
  modifying, altering, or creating derivative works

***Always acknowledge your source on any published or unpublished document when you use data found on electronic resources.***


Some resources allow inclusion for electronic reserves, course packs, and multiple copies for classroom use and interlibrary lending. Others explicitly forbid one or more of these activities.

Sharing with non-Drexel users:   This means peer-to-peer informal sharing for research, teaching and educational purposes.  For example, if you are working with a colleague at another institution, and wish to make him/her aware of an article of mutual interest, you may send that article in print or electronically if this use is "allowed".  Some publishers do not allow sharing with non-Drexel users, and only allow this activity with other authorized users within the Drexel community.

Course Reserves:  Most electronic resources may be used for print or electronic reserves.  Reserves, both print and electronic, need to be secured, and not made available on the open web.   See Drexel Course Reserves for reserved materials.

Course Packs:  Some electronic resources allow for limited portions, such as a single articles from a journal, to be reproduced and provided to students in a course pack.  In nearly all cases, course packs must be provided on a cost recovery basis only, and not sold for profit.   If "Course packs not allowed" is indicated, then the material needs to have copyright cleared with the publisher before proceeding with inclusion in a course pack. 


Access to licensed electronic resources is restricted to current Drexel University students, faculty and staff ("Drexel community"). If you are off-campus, access to licensed electronic resources will require confirmation of your University status.

Copyright and Licensing Restrictions

All Drexel users must respect the copyrights in works that are accessible through computers connected to the Drexel network. No copyrighted work may be copied, published, disseminated, displayed, performed or played without permission of the copyright holder except in accordance with Fair Use (read more about "Fair Use" as defined in Title 17, Section 107 ) or licensed agreement. Drexel may terminate the network access of users who are found to have repeatedly infringed the copyright of others. Please contact Noelle Egan, Electronic Resources Librarian, if you have questions about acceptable use of electronic resources, or if you are having access difficulties.


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