Library and Information Service

Copyright and Plagiarism

Copyright is the right whereby certain products of the mind are protected by law. The Copyright Act (Act 98 of 1978) states that copyright is breached if a person, who is not the owner of the copyright, in any way reproduces literary or musical works without the permission of the owner.

South Africa is a signatory of the Bern Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works. As a member of the Bern Union, South Africa is compelled to ensure that its copyright laws comply with certain minimum requirements and consequently, it undertakes to treat the works of other countries in the same manner it does its own.


  • What is copyright?
  • NWU Copyright booklet
  • Electronic Copyright Reporting System for staff (User manual)
    Academic staff must take note of the following:
    The NWU's DALRO blanket license agreement stipulates that academic staff members must report on all copying from books and serial publications. In future, all reports on copying from books and serial publications must be generated on the new electronic Copyright Reporting System. Please keep in mind that reports may be generated retrospectively. In other words, if you comply with DALRO stipulations (10%, 1 chapter or 1 article etc.), you do not have to apply for permission before you distribute the copies to the students. However, all reporting in terms of material that was copied and distributed to students during the semester, must be completed by the end of each semester. The NWU may incur a serious risk if we provide insufficient reports to DALRO.

For any copyright or DALRO queries on Potchefstroom Campus, please contact Tarien Jacobs.

Tarien Jacobs
Corporate and Information Governance Services
Institutional Office
Building C1 Room 241
+27 (0)18 299 4945


The Library and Copyright

Your Campus Library can be contacted as usual for short loan and electronic reserved material. Library staff will see to it that copyright clearance be processed whenever neccesary.