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Copyright for Authors & Creators: University Policy

A guide for students, staff, and faculty members on author rights and copyright.

The Faculty Handbook is currently under committee review

Your Creator Rights at Texas Wesleyan

The university's Intellectual Property Policy is located in the appendix of the Faculty Handbook beginning on page 57.

The policy defines intellectual property as including "without limitation, any invention, discovery, know-how, creation, trade secret, technology, scientific or technological development, research data, work of authorship, software (including source code and object code), multimedia or audiovisual material, photographs, and authored course materials, regardless of whether subject to protection under patent, trademark, copyright, or other laws."

The U.S. Copyright Law states that works created during a persons employment belong to the employer rather than the employee ("Work for Hire) but many universities, including Texas Wesleyan University, allow the creator (faculty & students) to maintain copyright with some exceptions:

  • Assigned tasks
  • Outside/specific agreements
  • Institutional works
  • Extraordinary support

See the handbook for further details on the exceptions (page 58-60).


Patentable works

Unless otherwise agreed in writing "all inventions made by an individual with (i) a University appointment in furtherance of his/her university responsibilities, and/or (ii) with the use of university resources, including those provided through an externally funded grant, contract, or other type of award or gift to the University, belong to the University. An invention that was made by an individual on his/her own time and unrelated to his/her University responsibilities and was conceived or reduced to practice without the use of significant University resources belongs to the individual."

All inventions made under these circumstances require written disclosure to the Provost's Office

Who to Contact

The Intellectual Property Advisory Committee maintains and implements the Intellectual Property Policy. If there are any questions or concerns you feel should be addressed, contact the chair of the committee.

For immediate questions or concerns contact the university attorney. 

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