Is it acceptable to create YouTube videos about exercises of a University level course ?

I struggle to follow a quantum mechanics course I need to take and thought about making YouTube videos where I explain the exercises and their solutions provided to us step by step. I already did that for two math courses last year, and not only did it help me a lot, it also helped other people that watched my videos. But some people told me to be cautious, because after all I did not create those exercises by myself and thus I have no right to talk about them in a YouTube video.

What should one do in those cases ?


4 Answers 4


As an alternative to basing your videos on someone else's work, I suggest writing your own exercises. Each exercise should bring out the issues you want to cover in the corresponding video.

If you write your own exercises, on your own time, you own the copyright, and can do what you want with them, including creating videos about solving them.

That would be superior from a learning point of view, because your users will be able to watch your video, learn from it, and then check their understanding by completing the coursework.


Actually, I think it is easy to avoid most problems. Plagiarism is about presenting something of others as if it is your own. If you cite the source, giving proper attribution, you avoid plagiarism absolutely.

Copyright is another issue, but it is about copying something for which you don't have the proper rights. You don't seem to be doing that. Taking a video of the actual exercise statement (say, from a book) would probably be a form of copying, of course.

Ideas, however, are free to use. The solutions you give are your own and you can certainly discuss the ideas in an exercise without issue.

But a final issue should also be considered. If you are making it easy for others to engage in academic dishonesty by avoiding doing the exercises themselves, the professor of the course won't be happy with you and can possibly make a claim that you are assisting. That can result in academic sanction.

So, a good course, overall, is to make videos that don't "solve" the specific exercises of a course, but help people to understand the principles and insights needed to solve the exercises on their own. Using your own exercises is a good way to do that.


You should ask whoever created the exercises for permission. If they give it to you, then you can proceed. If they don't give you permission, better to know before you create the videos so you can do something else.

This is pretty much a good strategy any time you are dealing with copyright issues -- ask permission before you use the material.


Most times you get the same recipe, let's say a pie crust recipe but measurement amounts are different. Sometimes it is 2 cups or 2.5 cups or in grams but the ratio is the same.

If you were to reference your professor, s/he would not like it that you give his teaching material away.

How to make your exercise sample yours, change proportions and examples. Try to bring more than one solution.

I remember my professor telling that every exam, he asks around the same questions and there are only so many, but he changes them around.

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