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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Streaming Media Resources

this is a guide to audio and video services available from the library and on demand, including both licensed and free resources.


More and more faculty and students are using audio-visual materials for teaching and learning. In some cases, faculty are showing clips from movies or documentaries to emphasize a point they are making in class. In other cases, students are expected to view full-length films and analyze them as part of a class assignment.  Because educational modes are changing and evolving, the Library has been receiving requests for audio and video on demand, also known as streaming media.

This guide attempts to provide an organized overview of the audio-visual resources available to the UMass community, not only our physical collections, but also licensed content and links to free resources. We would also like to share information relating to copyright, permissions, and citations for audiovisual material.

What is Streaming Media and Video on Demand?

Video on Demand (VOD) allows a person to select a video and view it at their convenience on their television, computer, or portable device. Normal videorecording features are available for starting, pausing, fast-forwarding, etc. The video is stored on a server and when requested either downloaded to the individual's hard-drive or streamed. 

Streaming Media is any content in audio or moving picture form - movies, documentaries, cartoon animations, film clips, newsreels, etc., that is formatted for delivery over the internet to a personal computer. Streaming media is not captured or stored on the personal computer.