Workshop: Finding open media online
  • Babbage 323

  • Babbage 323

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Want to improve your teaching materials; making them more engaging and easier to understand? Or maybe you want to make your marketing materials more exciting and effective?  

Often, the first step is simply to use some images or maybe create a podcast. But where do you find them? Where possible, it is always best to create and use images or music that you have made yourselves, but time is often short and you don’t always have what you need to hand, so it can be tempting to find something online and use that. The problem is that all media is protected by copyright and we can’t just use what we found on Google without getting permission first.  

What you can do, is limit your searching to media available on open licenses such as Creative Commons.

This workshop aims to give you a basic understanding of how copyright effects the use of images/media in creating materials at the University, what you can and can’t do; explaining what open licensing is and how it can be used to search for open and free media.

Who is this workshop for?

This workshop is aimed at anyone who is working with images, audio or video whilst creating materials for use internally within their teaching at the university or for any external marketing use.


There are no pre-requisites for this course, other than having a need to find and use images or other media within your work at the University of Plymouth, however you may well find that after undertaking either of our media creation courses: ‘Introduction to Podcasting’ or ‘Using Video for Teaching’, you will find this course useful to help you find open materials to integrate into the media you create.

What will I learn?

We will start with a quick and simple overview of how copyright law controls how we use images/media in our materials. We will then learn how open licensing has grown to allow the free sharing of images/media on the internet, and have a close look at the most popular system: Creative Commons. Having gained an insight into open licensing and Creative Commons, we will explore a range of ways to find open media, including using the CC search engine.

Course content and learning outcomes:

This workshop is a mixture of presentations, discussion and hands-on practice, with plenty of time to work by yourself finding the images you want, so bring along a list of images you want to find.

By the end of the workshop you will be able to demonstrate your ability to:

  • Recognise what images and media you are allowed use in your materials and recall how the copyright laws control their usage.
  • Distinguish between a range of open licensing systems and compare their usefulness.
  • Identify the correct Creative Commons licenses to find images/media with the appropriate permissions for your use.
  • Use a range of methods for finding images and media online with open licenses, including use of the CC search engine.
  • Create and use the correct Creative Commons license for your own materials and write the attribution correctly.
Book your place using this direct link via the link above. 

For enquiries about this workshop please contact the Digital Education team.

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Event photography and video

Please be aware that some of the University of Plymouth's public events (both online and offline) may be attended by University staff, photographers and videographers, for capturing content to be used in University online and offline marketing and promotional materials, for example webpages, brochures or leaflets. If you, or a member of your group, do not wish to be photographed or recorded, please let a member of staff know.