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Academic Skills Team: A guide for staff

Library Digitisation Service

The Library Digitisation Service is available to teaching staff who would like to request book chapters or journal articles to be scanned for supplementary use in teaching, these scans will be made available via an Online Reading List.

There should be no content displayed on Blackboard or Reading Lists Online that does not comply with our CLA HE Licence.  Checks are carried out periodically as part of the Copyright Licensing Agency Programme of Account Management and Review.

Please remember when scanning/photocopying to ensure you are not breaking copyright law, as copyright breaches can be costly and disreputable to the University.

The Benefits of Digitisation

  • 24/7 access for your students to supplementary reading material
  • Embedding of material into your online reading list
  • High quality OCR searchable scans
  • No copyright infringement

What Can Be Included?

What can I include?

The University holds the CLA Higher Education Licence for Photocopying and Scanning.

CLA HE User Guidelines is a resource provided by the Copyright Licensing Agency that gives you an in-depth overview of the terms and conditions of the Licence (for both scanning and photocopying).  A quick guide for academic staff understand the CLA Higher Education Licence is also available online.

The CLA HE Licence is for supplementary reading only, the Copyright Licensing Agency state that selecting the core chapters from a textbook to make these available to students independently as Course Extracts or in a Course Pack may remove the need for a student to purchase that book.  This could affect publisher primary sales of books to students and so would be a breach of the CLA HE Licence agreement.

We recommended the following checks beforehand to save you the time of requesting an item that cannot be scanned.

Please check the Library Catalogue as the original text must be owned by the University.  Items that are not in stock can be ordered copyright fee paid from the British Library.

Use the CLA HE Title Check Permissions tool to check whether the Licence covers a particular book or journal for copying in the UK before requesting a scan.  You only need to insert the title (or ISBN/ISSN if you have it) for instant permissions information.  Enter your title/ISBN into the white box inside the lime green ribbon and choose 'Higher Education' from the drop-down menu on the top left where it says, 'Show results by licence sector'.

Most UK material is included subject to the List of Excluded Categories and Works published on the CLA website.  For US works scans can only be made from specifically opted in material.

The sum of scanned extracts for a particular course must not substitute a textbook for the course.  The Copyright Licensing Agency provide a good practice guide that you should read if you are requesting a large number of extracts.

The standard route to request a scan is now through Online Reading Lists. You can now request readings to be digitised and added to a list via email or request a scan directly through Reading List Online.

How much can I include?

There are limits on the amount of material which can be included in a course pack without express permission being obtained from the rights holder(s) which may result in a fee being paid.

We are permitted to copy one extract OR up to 10% of a whole publication, whichever is the greater. For example, an extract is.

  • one chapter of a book one article from a journal issue
  • one paper of one set of conference proceedings
  • one scene from a play
  • one short story or one poem or one play of not more than 10 pages from an anthology of short stories, poems or plays
  • one report of a single case from a report of judicial proceedings

If the material you would like scanned exceeds the limits permitted under the CLA licence, we may be able to purchase permission to scan a second extract (for example, another chapter from a book, or another 10%).  This would be purchased on an annual basis and is subject to publisher permission and charges. A business case may be needed to justify the purchase of these items

How Do I Order My Digital Material?

Requesting material via the Reading Lists Online website

As the digitisation process is now integrated with Reading Lists Online you can submit a digitisation request direct from any online reading list.

First, add the item to your reading list, following the instructions above to add new items to your reading list.

Leganto screenshot showing a book and the option to request digitisation of the title

When you have found the title, you will see information from the CLA about the resource; the scanning section will give you a good indication of if scanning for digitisation is allowed. 

Leganto screenshot showing example of CLA information for digitisation 

Once you have checked the CLA information, select the digitisation request button and complete the page range and chapter information as required and click submit. Once approved, the link will be added to the reading list from the DCS. 

Leganto screenshot of digitisation request form

For further informatrion, Library staff have created a training guide to give you the essential information you need to know about using Leganto to create and manage your reading lists.

When Will My Digitisation Be Ready?

Fulfilment time is dependent on the request and the information you provide.

We recommend allowing a minimum of seven working days from request to delivery, with the majority of digital material available within 28 days – but in periods of high demand these times may be increased.

Help us to reduce the time by checking availability of items within the library first before sending and providing detailed title information to help us to process your request quickly.

Copyright Fee Paid items and Second Extract permissions are subject to availability and response times from external parties.  Fulfilment time for these items will be increased.

Contact Us

If you have any questions, you can contact the Library team via e-mail at