The Art Institute of Los Angeles
Copyright Issues Course Syllabus

Course Title: GD 212 Copyright Issues
Quarter: Summer 1999
Instructor: Mary Courtney, M.Ed., M.A.
Email: mizmary@courtney.org
Course Description: This course analyzes intellectual property law, along with registration and licensing procedures. Copyright and trademark history and laws are studied, along with case studies relevant to published and distributed material.

Course Length: 11 Weeks Contact Hours: 22 lecture, 22 lab Credit Hours: 4

Anticipated Student Learning Outcomes (Objectives):

  1. Discuss the historical background of copyright.
  2. Describe the purpose of and effect of the copyright clause of the U.S. Constitution and the principles underlying the Copyright Act.
  3. Determine which types of work should be copyrighted and which cannot.
  4. Describe the course of copyright ownership, including the copyright ownership of works made for hire, collective works and joint works.
  5. Describe the scope and limitations on exclusive rights of copyright.
  6. Explain the copyright notice, and complete and file the necessary copyright forms and deposit material.
  7. Describe the principles of fair use, right of publicity, and moral rights.
  8. Determine which types of marks are entitled to be registered and which aren't.
  9. Understand the legal protections available for trademarks.
  10. Describe the procedures of using and registering trademarks.

Course Prerequisites: none, but English I and II recommended.

Course Requirements: Attending class meetings and evaluations, mastering weekly reports on readings, fulfilling project requirement as agreed.

Required Text: How to Register Your Own Copyright by Mark Warda. (Cost: approximately $20) Some required readings are on the Web. Most links are available on the course web pages. A few readings are also available in the LRC on reserve.

Method of Instruction: Students will complete reading and writing assignments, then report on them in class. Presentation project planning will occur in class meetings and on the course listserve. Student performance on reports, quizzes, tests, trial presentations and final presentations will be assessed.

Materials, Supplies, Technology Needed: Students have access to the World Wide Web via the lab computers. They must have or create an email account and register for the course listserve. They should type or print reports legibly.

Estimated Homework Hours: Three hours of reading and one hour of writing per week.

Method of Evaluation:

There is an assessment each week, often by quiz, which is figured into the P/P/P score. Performance on weekly reports are 20% of the course grade, and, because they are discussed, they count towards the P/P/P grade as well.

Course Outline
Complete the "Week 2" activities and report before coming to the second class meeting, and so on. Web pages are not ready for use until the week before they're "due."
Week 1:   Overview of course; introductions; project plan; online resources and skills.
Week 2:   What is a copyright?
Week 3:   Copyright History. Intern'l copyright. How long does a copyright last? New developments.
Week 4:   What can and cannot be copyrighted?
Week 5:   What can you use of others' works? License and Fair Use.
Week 6:   Midterm evaluation: "debunking myths" Workshop presentations.
Week 7:   Why register your copyright? Who can claim and register a copyright? Protecting your copyright. Transferring a copyright. Licensing. How to register a copyright. Workshop presentations.
Week 8:   Intro to Trademark: terms, protections, types. Workshop presentations.
Week 9:   Trademark Searching and Filing.
Week 10:   Review with Critical Incidents and Case Studies
Week 11:   Exam