As you develop and manage your online course it’s important to understand digital copyright and ownership surrounding the material you create. In short, as a faculty member the materials you create for your course belong to you, and you are free to take that work to any other organization or institution you like. Under normal circumstances the faculty member who developed the course would need to send OEL written permission to give another faculty or department administrator access to view or copy from it.
If you are interested in further detail about how this is determined, please refer to SPG 601.28, Who Holds Copyright at or in Affiliation with the University of Michigan.
Section A makes a blanket statement that says the university owns the copyright to all work created by any employee as a ‘work for hire’. Thus, setting an overarching policy that UM owns the work its employees create. Something like this is typically needed for organizations to operate efficiently. Section B then creates a carve-out where the university transfers the copyright of scholarly work back to the faculty who created it. This moves ownership from the university to the appropriate faculty for any course work they create. Meaning, the faculty own their courses no matter the modality.
Finally, section B, point 1, subsection A of the above SPG gives us guidance as it pertains to academic continuity for our students. It’s vital that students are able to participate in the educational process they are expecting. If a faculty member were to stop interacting with their course for any number of reasons mid-semester, a Dean could have another faculty member added to ensure continuity.