Streaming Video Collections

During your summer break, take a look at the library’s streaming video collections. The library subscribes to tens of thousands of videos that are available 24/7 to the entire UMass Boston community. Rather than use precious class time, films can be assigned as homework. All students need is a library barcode to login from off-campus.  

Alexander Street Press and Kanopy offer tools to create clips and playlists that can be shared with students. An account is required to create playlists and clips. Every playlist, clip and video has unique URL and embed code that provides remote access to the material. The embed code allows you to insert the video into Blackboard or other learning management systems.

Alexander Street Press contains over 20,000 videos and numerous collections from multiple disciplines. Some particularly strong areas are Anthropology, Counseling, and History. All the videos are indexed by real people so subject headings are more accurate than automated systems but keyword searching is in depth as it includes the transcript. The entire video database can be searched at once and each collection can be searched individually. There is an option to browse the collections by different sub-topics such as awards, people, or places.

The videos contain on screen transcripts that highlight the text in synchronization with the audio and video. When you create a playlist, you can keep it private or share it with other users. You can also explore playlists created by others in the university or browse all public playlists.

Check out footage of Columbia Point before the campus was built.


Films on Demand is an academic collection that is focused on high quality. It strives to provide the top films for every academic field of study. Films on Demand includes many award winning documentaries and every title is vetted before it is added to the collection. Pre-made segments are available for many films and some films include related resources, such as discussion topics and learning guides.

Peabody award-winning journalist John Hockenberry presents a panel of experts in Nanotechnology and Medicine:

Kanopy is a multidisciplinary database of documentaries and independent films. The strongest and most used collection is the Media Education Foundation, which produces documentary films critically examining the influence of mass media on American culture. Other strengths are in the areas of education, gender, global studies, LGBT and race.

Watch the award winning Tough Guise 2: Violence, Manhood & American Culture from the Media Education Foundation.

All videos can be found by searching the Healey Library Catalog. From the basic search page, select Videorecordings next to the drop down menu, Filter your results. Streaming videos contain a link to the online video collection. For information about classroom viewing or recommending films for the collection, see Film & Media Borrowing Policies and Procedures.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *