Lecture Capture Guidance


The University has an institutional system Panopto that enables tutors to record lectures and make them available to their students via the institutional Virtual Learning Environment Blackboard.

There are many educational benefits in recording lectures, training sessions or pre-recorded content which can be viewed by students on or off campus from a variety of desktop and mobile devices.  Subject to the points set out below, the University encourages staff to record, retain and make available for students all lectures which can be captured.  For the avoidance of doubt, a lecture is a teaching session which is wholly or principally tutor-presented.

Recorded content raises additional issues that do not occur with traditional teaching and this guidance document aims to address these issues.

The University recognises and acknowledges that:

  • lecture capture plays a role in complementing the live lecture experience and delivers benefits for students
  • lecture capture is also an important means of the University ensuring that disabled students are not disadvantaged in accordance with its obligations under the Equality Act 2010
  • reasonable adjustments may be required for staff with disabilities
  • lecture capture will involve processing of personal data including, in some cases, special category data
  • not all teaching styles are suitable for capture e.g. if a high degree of audience participation is used
  • ethical issues, or the use of sensitive material may render the recording of some teaching and learning activities inappropriate
  • there may be circumstances where voice only recording is appropriate
  • where lecture capture is not appropriate tutors should provide appropriate substitute learning materials and advise students why the lecture is not being recorded
  • recordings will not be used during periods of industrial action without the consent of the tutor involved
  • recordings will only be used for the agreed purposes and will only be made available as set out below.

This Guidance may be amended by the University in future and/or for other projects and should be read in conjunction with the University’s:

  1. Intellectual Property Regulations;
  2. Regulations relating to the use of services provided by iSolutions https://www.southampton.ac.uk/isolutions/regs.page
  3. Electronic Communications Policy/Acceptable Use Policy
  4. Data Protection Policy


Ownership of the recordings and other copyright works (for example presentation slides) created by the tutor for inclusion in the recording will be determined in accordance with the University’s Intellectual Property Regulations and employee’s contracts of employment, as amended from time to time.

Tutors who use Panopto or any other method of lecture capture must enter into an agreement with the University which grants the University rights over various copyright works and related rights existing in the recordings, which are otherwise not covered by the University‚Äôs Intellectual Property Regulations. Users of the Panopto Service will be required to accept these terms and conditions electronically via a tick box in order to access the Service confirming they have completed these terms and conditions electronically.  Tutors using other methods to record lectures will also be required to accept these terms and conditions electronically.

Guest or Visiting Lecturers or lecturers who work part time for the University and work for other institutions must also enter into a similar agreement with the University when recording a lecture for the University.

Students must be informed if a lecture is being recorded, using visual and oral notices. An example of a visual notice can be found at Appendix A.

Care must be taken when including third-party copyright material in recordings and material should not be recorded unless there is:

  • a written agreement in place between the University and the third party permitting this; or
  • the material is used within the terms of a licence; or
  • the material is used in the context of fair dealing, that is
  • the work must be solely used to illustrate a point;
  • the use of the work must not be for commercial purposes;
  • the use must be fair dealing; and
  • the work must be accompanied by sufficient acknowledgement.

Various rights in the Recordings

The University’s Intellectual Property Regulations[[1]] form part of the conditions of employment for staff. The recording and other copyright works (e.g. literary, dramatic, musical, artistic work, or a film), created by the tutor for inclusion in the recording, unless covered by clause 3.1.1, are works specifically commissioned by the University. The ownership of copyright in these works will be determined in accordance with the University’s Intellectual Property Regulations, as amended from time to time.

Delivery of a lecture may qualify as a performance (as defined by the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 UK[[2]] ) (the ‚ÄúCDPA‚ÄĚ) and where this is the case, the tutor will have a separate distinct right known as a performer‚Äôs right. This exists apart from copyright and is also a property right that can be dealt with in the same way as any other intellectual property right. It can therefore be licensed or assigned by the tutor. The agreement which you are asked to enter into before using Panopto or other recording method makes it clear that you are expressly giving your consent to the University to make the recording(s) of your lecture and to subsequently make those recordings available to students for the period and purposes set out below.

Usage, Access and Retention

Recordings will only be used for agreed purposes as follows:

Recordings of lectures are made available only to the cohorts of students for whom the lecture was prepared and delivered.  Unless stated otherwise in this guidance, neither the recording nor any excerpts are intended for release or use by the general public and may not be published, disseminated or shared in any format or media without consent.

Students are permitted to access and view recordings of lectures via Blackboard or Teams for their private study and non-commercial research only and will be required to agree to a usage policy at the point of access to the recording.  A breach of this requirement may result in academic misconduct proceedings.

Recordings will not be used during periods of industrial action without the prior agreement of the tutor involved.

Recordings will not be used for staff performance management without the prior agreement of the tutor but may be used for self-reflection and teaching enhancement by the tutor.

Recordings may be used for University research to improve student access to recorded material.

One of the concerns frequently voiced by tutors about lecture capture is the possibility that their recorded lectures will continue to be used after they have left the University and that older recordings with out-of-date information could damage their academic reputation. The following safeguards help ensure that this situation does not arise:

  • Tutors retain control over which of their sessions are recorded and the nature and frequency of the recording.
  • Tutors may remove the recordings they have placed on Blackboard at any time but should give students reasonable notice before doing so. If tutors do not remove the recording themselves, the period the University may keep a recording under the Agreement will start from the date the recording is made and last until the end of the following academic year. For example, a recording made in November 2020 could be used until September 2022, the end of Semester 2 the following academic year. In practice, iSolutions will implement a procedure during the summer vacation each year to automatically delete all recordings that have ‚Äėexpired‚Äô. The deletion of old recordings will also help iSolutions manage the disk storage required.

In addition, where a lecture is the subject of a complaint or there are concerns relating to its continued availability (for example due to the nature of the content or topic(s) being discussed), which may be notified by the tutor or a third party, Legal Services will authorise immediate suspension of access to the lecture pending verification of the complaint or concern.

It will of course be possible for tutors to extend the availability of their recordings, at their discretion and subject to storage capacities, by agreement with the University.

iSolutions will give notice to tutors that recordings from a particular academic year are about to be deleted and provide instructions on how these recording may be kept.

It is important that tutors alert students to the fact that a lecture is being recorded. The lecture capture system only focuses on the tutor (or presenter) so students will not ordinarily be recorded although any questions or comments they make during the lecture will be recorded.

There are several ways in which students may be informed that a lecture is being recorded. The easiest method would be for the tutor to make an announcement at the beginning of the lecture being recorded. The announcement itself should also be recorded. The tutor should also include a PowerPoint slide at the beginning of a lecture that reminds students about the recording. An example can be found at Appendix A.

Where students are asked to give formal presentations or make substantial contributions during the course of the lecture being recorded, such that their contributions could also give rise to independent performance rights, the tutor will need to ensure that a written agreement is obtained from the students concerned before the lecture takes place. If this is not possible, these sessions should not be recorded.

Inclusion of Material which is not owned by or licensed to the University

As set out in the University’s Intellectual Property Regulations, it is the responsibility of each staff member not to infringe the intellectual property rights of third parties.

Third party rights are any rights which a party (other than the University or tutor) has in a work included in the recording. This extends to all forms of intellectual property and related rights. However, the most likely third party right you will encounter is copyright.

Copyright protects literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works, films, sound recordings, book layouts and broadcasts. Tutors who wish to use a copyright work should always consider whether permission is required from the copyright owner.  Some exemptions exist which allow you to use part of all of a copyright work without permission but if in doubt seek legal advice from legalservices@soton.ac.uk.

Copying for the purposes of ‚Äėillustration for instruction‚Äô is permitted provided the amount of copying is fair and appropriately acknowledged and

  • the work is used solely to illustrate a point
  • the use is not for commercial purposes

The Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) Higher Education Licence allows small amounts of published copyright works (books and journals) to be copied for teaching purposes. This includes illustrations and images within the works.

The Educational Recording Agency (ERA) licence, permits the use of (and copying of) TV and radio broadcasts for educational purposes, .  This covers material from on demand TV services such as the BBC iPlayer.

Material licensed under Creative Commons (CC) may also be used subject to complying with the terms of the licence.

Downloading images from the internet is not recommended as they may be subject to copyright.  Tutors/creators of the content should use images

  • where the copyright has expired
  • which are licensed under a CC licence
  • that are Open Educational Resources
  • that you have created and own or the University owns
  • where you have obtained consent from the copyright owner.

Showing and recording material from commercially bought videos or DVD is permitted to a limited extent for educational purposes but substantial use of the content should not be recorded without permission of the copyright owner.

Material from YouTube and similar sites should only be used with permission unless a CC licence is in place.

Please consult with Legal Services in good time if you are unsure whether there is an agreement in place between the University and a third party (such as a relevant collecting society) which will permit you to use their material (or materials which have been licensed to them) in the recorded lecture or if you are in doubt about whether any item may be used. Any permission you obtain to use a work in the course of delivering a lecture face to face will specifically need to mention that permission has been given to publish it in the University’s virtual learning environment or on our website for the time that the recording will be accessible to students. This is in keeping with the University’s strong views about the value of intellectual property (IP) and the importance of academic integrity.

Advice on copyright and the availability of open-licensed materials can be sought from legalservices@soton.ac.uk.

Data Protection & Confidentiality

Lecture capture may involve consideration of data protection rights because of processing personal data of individuals.  The University is required to comply with the Data Protection Act 2018. It must also comply with the University‚Äôs duties as a public authority for the purposes of the Human Rights Act 1998, particularly the right to privacy under Article 8(1) ECHR.

The University‚Äôs lawful basis for processing personal data for lecture capture is public task (Article 6(1)(e) UK GDPR[3]) ‚Äď specifically as regards the provision of educational services, including the provision of education to students with a disability.

Alternatively, the recording practices governed by this policy would be justified by the legitimate interests of the University (in delivering its educational services effectively) and students (in receiving an optimum university education).

Where the recording is a legal requirement, particularly where required to fulfil the University’s legal responsibilities to a student with a disability, the University has grounds to require the recording in accordance with Article 6 (1) (c) of UK GDPR.

The University has concluded that its approach to recordings is balanced and proportionate.

No recording of special category personal data is permitted without the explicit (opt-in) consent of those being recorded, unless explicit approval from the University’s Data Protection Officer has agreed in advance that other grounds may be relied upon to justify that processing of special category data based on the particular circumstances of that case. Special category data includes data that reveals a data subject’s racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade union membership, genetic data, biometric data for the purpose of uniquely identifying a natural person, data concerning health or data concerning a natural person’s sex life or sexual orientation.

It is vital that lectures and recordings of lectures in subjects such as medicine, health sciences, social sciences and education do not include any details about individuals unless the tutor has their explicit written consent. Professional standards require privacy and confidentiality to be maintained at all times and individual cases should never be discussed in class in such a way that the individuals concerned could be identified.

Note that it is possible to breach confidentiality inadvertently with a recording. For example, a student may come up to the tutor at the end of a lecture and discuss a confidential health or family issue, and that discussion can be accidentally recorded because the tutor has not yet stopped the recording. All tutors should know how to use the Panopto software or any other method of lecture capture to ensure that a recording is made unavailable with immediate effect. The recording must then be edited to remove the private discussion before it is made available to students.

Tutors should seek prior advice by contacting legalservices@soton.ac.uk  if they require assistance with questions of data protection and confidential information.

The status and accessibility of recordings

Tutors may encounter technical issues that prevent the lecture being recorded, forget to start recording or fail to resume after a pause. These events are unfortunate, but not critical.

Students should be aware that recorded lectures are only available as a supplement to live lectures, and there is no obligation for the University to provide them.

The University is currently reviewing the provision of captions.

Other Sources of Guidance

JISC Legal Services have published guidelines on the legal considerations of recording lectures for UK FE and HE institutions. This can be accessed at https://www.jisc.ac.uk/guides/recording-lectures-legal-considerations

Appendix A: PowerPoint slide

At the start of each lecture, tutors can include this slide as a reminder to students:

Lecture recording slide example:

The graphic is also used on a poster which should be displayed in rooms that offer lecture capture.

This lecture is being recorded PowerPoint slide download.

Revision History

  1. Draft reviewed and released by Legal Services 5 Nov 2010 (5262)
  2. Updated by iSolutions November 2012
  3. Updated by iSolutions May 2013
  4. Not updated, but moved to elearn.southampton.ac.uk September 2016
  5. Update by Legal Services 10 March 2020
  6. Update by Legal Services 1 October 2020
  7. Update by Legal Services 21 January 2022

[1] Available online at https://www.southampton.ac.uk/~assets/doc/calendar/Intellectual%20Property%20Regulations.pdf

[2] Available online at


[3] UK GDPR means the General Data Protection Regulation, Regulation (EU) 2016/679, as it forms part of domestic law in the United Kingdom by virtue of section 3 of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 and DPPEC (Data Protection, Privacy and Electronic Communications (Amendment Etc.) (EU Exit)) Regulations 2019 (including as further amended or modified by the laws of the United Kingdom or of a part of the United Kingdom from time to time).

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