Australian copyright law is legislated at Federal level by the Australian parliament. It covers literary, dramatic, artistic and musical works, and subject matter such as published editions, sound recordings, broadcasts and films. The Copyright Act 1968 (Copyright Act) provides specific Statutory and Voluntary Licence schemes for educational use of copyright material. The Copyright Agency Limited (CAL) and Screenrights administer the statutory licences while the Australasian Performing Rights Association (APRA), AMCOS (Australasian Mechanical Copyright Owners Society) are the main organisations which administer the voluntary licences. These uses are paid for by schools. AISNSW provides a channel for independent schools to pay annual per student copyright fees for the two statutory licences as well as the APRA, AMCOS and ARIA licences which cover the main uses of music in schools.

The National Copyright Unit (NCU) is a specialist copyright team responsible for copyright policy and administration for Australian schools and TAFE. NCU maintains a comprehensive series of information sheets providing useful facts, practical advice and scenarios on copyright for schools on the Smartcopying website.