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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Finding and Using Creative Commons Works

Learn how to incorporate Creative Commons licensed materials into your research and other projects.


Creative commons licensed materials can include images, video, audio, text, webpages, and any anything that can be shared digitally. Using materials that are licensed under a Creative Commons license is helpful when you plan to share the products of your work publicly because you know your use is permissible.

Examples of projects that might benefit from using Creative Commons licensed materials:

  • Images within a research paper
  • Conference materials
  • Multimedia projects
  • Teaching materials you plan to share
  • Anything you plan to make publicly available



Audio and Video


A variety of text-based materials may be shared online using a Creative Commons license, including scholarly articles, books, creative works, presentation slides, lesson plans, blog posts, and more. Finding these materials can be more difficult, but these resources are a few places to start depending on the type of material you are looking for.