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Getting the Most from Free Resources

Quick guide to Creative Commons licences


Creative Commons licences offer a simple way for rights owners to indicate how they wish their  work to be shared. The Creative Commons system offers a choice of predefined licences which are represented by the symbols below.

Basic Licence  
CC BY "Attribution":  The author must be credited correctly and the licence must be referenced (see below)
Optional elements  
NC "Non-commercial". You can copy the work, but not for commercial use or to make money
ND "No Derivatives".  You can copy the work as is, but not change it.
SA "Share a like". You can copy the work and publish an adaption (derivative work). The Derivative work must be offered under the same licence as the original.
Public Domain  
CC0 CC0 is on its own to indicate that the rightsowner has reserved no rights, not even a right of attribution. However referencing will still be required if the work is being used in coursework.

Having a universal licensing system has also enabled sites such as Youtube, Google and Flickr to easily search for items with a creative commons licence



When using Creative Commons items, the format suggested by is to provide an acknowledgement in the format below (without the square brackets)

[Title of the item] by [author or their online identity] is licensed under [CC BY 2.0]. If using the work online (eg. on GSM Learn), provide a link to the item. More explanation about attribution can be found here: