Digital Copies Service

Lecturers can use the Digital Copies Service to request scans for sharing with students on Canvas. Please be aware that UK copyright law applies to all University staff across the world. This means that there are important restrictions to follow when it comes to copying materials. Find out more on our copyright webpage. All scans of chapters and articles must be made available through the Digital Content Store. Scans of books and chapters must not be directly uploaded to the VLE.

What can be provided?

  • Scanned extracts of print material held in the library collection and published in the UK, US and some other territories
  • Material outwith the library collection (the library pays a copyright fee for these items).

We can provide the following under the terms of our CLA licence:

  • 10% or one chapter from a book, whichever is greater
  • 10% or one article from an issue of a journal
  • 10% or one paper from a set of conference proceedings.

The library uses the British Library Enhanced Higher Education Supply Service (eHESS) to provide scanned extracts. Information on material excluded from the licence is available from the CLA website.

Can I digitise material myself?

As a lecturer, you can create a scan but you must not directly upload it to Canvas. To comply with the University’s copyright licence, the scan must be sent to a member of the library team who will upload the document into the Digital Content Store. You will then be provided with a link to the chapter or article, which you can add to your Canvas course for students to use.

Should I use the Digital Copies Service to get a scan for my own research?

If you need a scan of an article or book chapter for your own use and not for sharing with others, please check Discovery to see if the item is available at Heriot-Watt.  If it is not available through Discovery you may be able to use Interlibrary Loan to request a scan from elsewhere. Interlibrary Loan scans are provided for your own use and cannot be shared with other people.

How do I request a scan?

You can request scans of chapters or articles for digitsation by completing an online form providing the following information:

  • Course title
  • Course code
  • Number of students
  • Book chapter or journal article details.

Your request will be processed by your Liaison Librarian who will contact you with the details of how to access your scan.

How long will it take?

We aim to provide scans within three weeks of your request.

Key information

Library Help