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Digitised content (scanning) service

Digitised Content: what our licence allows

Our licence from the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) enables us to scan journal articles and book chapters not otherwise available in digital format, but there are strict conditions that must be followed, such as:

  • The University must own a print copy of the original material. If the Library does not have an item in stock we will request it 'Copyright fee-paid' from the British Library. The charge for this service will be debited from the inter-library loan budget for your Faculty
  • The original material must be published in the UK, Denmark, Ireland, France, Norway, Spain, Switzerland, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, South Africa or US
  • Only "Designated Persons" may carry out scanning under the Licence. Currently only Library staff are designated persons.

There are limits on the amount that may be scanned - no more than 10% from a single published edition, or:

  • In the case of a book, one complete chapter
  • In the case of a journal/set of conference proceedings, one whole article.

For further information on scanning and Brightspace, please refer to the guide Copyright & Brightspace FAQs (PDF 173kb).

You can request any digitised content via the reading list for your unit if you already have editing rights to the list. Please contact your Faculty library team for advice. Alternatively you can request digitised content via our online form. Any items scanned under licence by library staff are placed on the reading list for the unit you are teaching.

Accessible copies for students using screen reading software

If one of your students needs an accessible copy of a scanned document, please ask them to email, identifying the document(s) they need converting to OCR format. The Digitised Content team will then send an accessible copy to the student either by email or CD depending on file size. This type of request will be dealt with on an individual basis with the student concerned.


Our Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) licence imposes restrictions on the type and amount of digitised material that can be made available via reading lists. Library staff will advise you if an item does not comply with the licence. Further guidelines can be found at Copyright Compliance. Alternatively, you can contact the Library's copyright adviser, Rachel Geeson.