Online Instructional Use of Media Collection

COVID-19 update:
Due to COVID-19 related health concerns and restrictions, JMU Libraries Course Reserves Service is limited to electronic resources only for the Fall 2020 semester. This means the Library is not accepting print or other analog materials (such as DVDs) for course reserves for the remainder of the 2020 calendar year. Submit your online media requests using our form and we will attempt to find options to support your course. JMU Libraries liaison librarians are ready to assist instructors in identifying digital options for their courses. You may be referred to a liaison if we are unable to locate an electronic option.

Our service:

  1. Accepts requests for materials that are integral to your teaching goals and not supplementary or optional for those goals and for your students.
  2. Reviews your request for Canvas use of audio/video media that we own, or you own, and if approved provides access in streaming form within your course site.


YOU MUST SUBMIT A SEPARATE REQUEST FORM FOR EACH TITLE REQUESTED.  We will respond to your request within three days. Filling the request may require several weeks; please plan accordingly.

Submit your request(s) here.

(JMU eID and password required)

The TEACH Act (as codified in 17 U.S. Code § 110) governs lawful use of copyrighted visual media in the online learning environment. For more information about  the TEACH Act, please refer to this guide.

In brief, to ensure that copyright holders’ rights are respected, and JMU and/or its employees are not placed in the position of being potentially liable for copyright violations:

  • The TEACH Act allows for the streaming of reasonable and limited portions of audiovisual work. For more information about this, please see the TEACH Act section of the JMU Libraries Copyright Guide or, for a practical self-assessment of whether your requested use would meet TEACH Act requirements, use the TEACH ACT Checklist provided by University of Texas Libraries. Also be aware that documentaries may be more suited to lawful online streaming than popular, mainstream movies.


  • Highly creative works, like popular, mainstream movies or any type of movie that is a work of fiction, or includes creative, dramatic elements or artistic endeavors like dance or musical performance may not be streamed in their entirety.


  • It is preferable to rely on lawfully licensed streaming video. Possibilities would include referring students to existing and affordable streaming platforms (Amazon Prime, Netflix) or reaching out to Liaison Librarians – –   who can advise on acquiring licensed content to be made available through JMU Libraries. It is also sometimes possible to find instances where lawful copies of media have been uploaded to popular streaming platforms by copyright holders, meaning that students can be advised to access content through that method.


If the media is available for purchase from Netflix, Amazon, Hulu or any similar provider for a reasonable fee, please direct students to purchase or lease that media rather than making streaming requests.

JMU Libraries may choose to purchase streaming media rather than providing LMS streaming services; course instructors can then refer their students to these items in the library’s collection.

Please Note:

This service is not a library e-reserves service. For those types of requests please visit the Course Reserves page.

Questions?  Please contact