Digital Learning Environment and Educational Materials

Reason for Policy

This policy clarifies faculty, staff and student responsibilities regarding educational materials recorded or distributed for educational purposes and provides important information about their rights and responsibilities related to the SOM’s digital learning environment.

Scope and Purpose

This policy addresses the School of Medicine’s (“SOM”) implementation of a comprehensive digital teaching and learning environment. The SOM’s facilities enable systematic recording of faculty lectures and presentations, as well as student clinical skills education sessions (including standardized patients or patient simulations). The SOM’s Learning Management System (“LMS”) enables online distribution of outlines, handouts, power-points, video and audio recordings, and other curricular materials (“Educational Materials”). This policy supplements existing SOM and University policies and does not replace them. The SOM reserves the right to revise this policy as deemed necessary in its sole discretion to address new technical or legal requirements.

Ownership of Educational Materials

Pursuant to the University of Virginia’s Policy on Ownership Rights in Copyrightable Material, RES-001, the University owns all rights, title and interest in copyrightable works created by University employees while acting within the scope of their employment. Consequently, all copyrights in Educational Materials created by SOM faculty in the course and scope of their regular teaching activities are owned by the University.

The University may use, adapt, modify, and distribute such Educational Materials for noncommercial teaching, research, or related educational purposes it deems appropriate. SOM faculty are granted rights to the Educational Materials they create, and are free to use, adapt, modify, and distribute them for teaching, research, or related educational purposes, whether commercial or noncommercial.

Creation, Distribution, and Use of Educational Materials

Copyright Responsibilities and LMS Distribution
SOM faculty, staff, and students are responsible for observing copyright law, including principles of fair use, and other relevant policies in their creation, distribution, and use of Educational Materials.

Duplication or Redistribution of Educational Materials by Students Prohibited
Students may not copy, adapt, modify, or redistribute Educational Materials they receive through the LMS without the express written consent of the course instructor. Unauthorized duplication, adaptation, modification, or dissemination of Educational Materials is a violation of this policy.

The Office of Medical Education annually archives Educational Materials made available through the LMS and retains them (to the extent technically feasible) until changes in file formats make the files unusable. Archived materials remain searchable and viewable by medical education technology staff, who can make them available to SOM faculty and staff as needed. Archived Educational Materials will be clearly labeled to clarify their original date, historical nature, and potential lack of scientific currency.

Audio and Video Recording

Audio and video recordings created as Educational Materials pursuant to this policy are authorized for the SOM’s internal teaching, learning, research and/or evaluation activities. The SOM and Vice President for Research will obtain written consent from the creating faculty or staff member prior to commercial use or external distribution of such recordings.

Types of Recordings Made and Uses of Recordings
The SOM regularly records faculty lectures and presentations, as well as student clinical skills education sessions (including standardized patients or patient simulations) in support of its core curricular activities. All decisions about access to such audio and video recordings are made in the sole discretion of the SOM.

  • SOM faculty lectures and presentations are recorded and made available to students, faculty and staff for study and learning.
  • Recordings made of interactive classes and seminars (teaching environments in which students are expected to participate actively), or in which students are otherwise identifiable, are distributed only to students enrolled in that class to protect student privacy under the Family Education Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA).
  • Educational sessions disclosing personal health information protected by HIPAA are not recorded.
  • Standardized patient interactions and simulations are regularly recorded for evaluation purposes.
    • Recordings involving individual students may be made available only to the student participant upon request.
    • Recordings involving multiple students will not be made available to students due to privacy considerations arising under FERPA.

Duplication or Redistribution of Recordings by Students Prohibited
Audio or video recordings created and shared with students under this policy are for personal academic and study purposes only. Recordings may not be duplicated or disseminated. Unauthorized duplication or dissemination of recordings is a violation of this policy.

Retention and Ownership of Recordings
Audio or video recordings are retained by the SOM for as long as is deemed administratively appropriate to meet the teaching and research mission of the institution. The SOM owns all audio or video recordings created under this policy.

Responsible Use of SOM Facilities

SOM teaching facilities and services are to be used in a manner that is compliant with copyright, privacy, and other relevant legal and policy considerations. Sponsors of events held in SOM facilities are responsible for ensuring that appropriate policies or written consents ensure such compliance]


UME Management Team approves changes to this policy.

Related Policies


  • Next scheduled review June 2026
  • Approved by UME Management Team June 2023
  • Revised and approved by SOM Dean, February 2020 as Digital Learning Environment and Educational Materials
  • Administrative updates February 2015
  • Implemented April 2010