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Video Resources

Videos in the Classroom

Showing copyrighted videos in class is permitted under U.S. copyright law. For more information, see our Copyright FAQ: 

Public Performances

For screenings not affiliated with a course or the curriculum, our Copyright FAQ can help you decide when to request permission from the video’s copyright holder prior to showing a copyrighted video:

The University Libraries’ collection includes documentaries and educational DVDs whose purchase prices included public performance rights, meaning the library has already paid the copyright owner for permission to show the video publicly. To find out which library DVDs have public performance rights, use our library's catalog, The CAT:

  1. Select the Advanced Search option
  2. In the "keyword" search box, type: includes public performance rights
  3. Scroll down to "AND have these attributes."
  4. From the Format menu, select "Video."

Several of our library’s streaming video databases, including Kanopy Streaming, Films on Demand, Docuseek2, and databases from Alexander Street Press, permit group screenings of their videos outside of the classroom to audience members who are Penn State students, faculty, and staff. The exception is Swank Motion Pictures: our library’s contract with Swank Motion Pictures permits group viewing only in a classroom setting for course-related learning.

For additional information or questions about public performance rights for videos, please contact our Office of Scholarly Communications and Copyright.