Skip to main content

Images, Video & More in Research: Home


Introduction to this Guide

This guide is designed to help you successfully incorporate dynamic and appropriate multimedia into your research and community endeavors. Beyond, you will find pages with helpful resources for finding various types of media and information about how to properly credit the use of media within your work. Not sure if you can use an image or video that you find? Ask your professor or one of our librarians before you do!


When using images in your research, including research presented on a poster at a conference, you must be sure to use the same level of attribution for the images as you would an article or any other source. Let's start by reviewing this helpful infographic, made by Curtis Newbold, that breaks down the key ideas of using Images in research. Click on the image for a larger view.

Newbold, Curtis. Can I Use that Picture?. 2014. The Visual Communication Guy. Accessed September 6, 2019.

Find Images in our Library Databases


Find Images on the Web


Click on the citation style you are using to learn how to properly cite images that you find on the web:

APA     MLA 8     Chicago (Notes-Bib)     Chicago (Author-Date)    


Streaming Media from the Library


Help with Kanopy, Academic Video Online, & Films on Demand

Kanopy offers a number of built-in features that can enhance your research and presentations. Click on the feature below to be directed to the Kanopy Help page that explains how to make the most of it.

Embedding Videos     Creating Clips & Playlists     Using a Film in PowerPoint     Using a Film in Class

Academic Video Online provides a useful libguide that can help answer all your questions about its features

Films on Demand offers many similar features! Get tips and training on how to use all these features here

or ask a librarian for more help.


Streaming Media from the Web


Click on the citation style you are using to learn how to properly cite videos that you find on the web:



The boom in popularity for podcasts is no coincidence, as many news outlets and media companies have embraced the medium and stream their content in this accessible way. Therefore, podcasts can certainly be considered as source material for your research. Perhaps you already have a number of favorites that you listen to in popular audio apps like the Podcasts App through Apple or the Google Podcasts App through Android. You can also find them through Stitcher, NPR, or on Spotify.

To cite a podcast episode, follow these examples:


Mars, Roman, host. “In and Out of LOVE.” 99% Invisible, Radiotopia, 23 Jan. 2013.


Mars, R. (Host). (2013, Jan 23). In and out of LOVE. 99% Invisible. Podcast retrieved from

Chicago Notes-Bibliography

Mars, Roman. "In and Out of LOVE." January 23, 2013. In 99% Invisible, produced by Roman Mars. Podcast. MP3 audio, 18:30.

Chicago Author-Date

Mars, Roman. 2013. "In and Out of LOVE." January 23, 2013. In 99% Invisible, produced by Roman Mars. Podcast. MP3 audio, 18:30.

For more information about how to cite podcasts, check our citation guides or ask-a-librarian.

Need to create a podcast? Here are some resources that can help:

Tips on Creating and Editing

NPR Training Storytelling Tips and Best Practices

Transom, A Showcase and Workshop for New Public Radio

Find Sound

The Library provides you with access to databases that contain audio that you can use or effect when editing your podcast. Additionally, we've found some excellent ones that are open-access that you can use too.

For music, check out the Internet Archive, the NYPL Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound, or the Library of Congress' National Jukebox.

For other audio to use, including sound-scapes and effects, we suggest that you use the Internet Archive or any of our audio databases.


To record your podcast, we recommend using Audacity, an easy-to-use, multi-track audio editor and recorder for Windows, Mac OS X, GNU/Linux and other operating systems. Developed by a group of volunteers as open source.

If you would like access to a professional microphone, we have a Blue Snowball available to borrow from the Library Services & Information Desk on the Main Floor of the Library.

Social Media

In modern research, social media posts can certainly be used as a valuable primary source. Not only are these platforms useful for gathering quotes and statements from popular figures in government and entertainment, but researchers and scholars alike will often use Twitter to share their research and engage with both their colleagues and the public.

Be warned though, the information presented on social media must be heavily scrutinized for accuracy and you should always fact check what you read or see on social media. Consider the following as a starting point for verifying the information:

1. Who/what is the source of the information? Are they a reputable established news organization or public figure? Can they be trusted?

2. When was the account created? How active are they? Be wary of recently created accounts or an account that tweets infrequently.

3. Can the information be corroborated from other sources?

4. Don't confuse facts and opinions.

For more, check out this Social Media LibGuide from our friends at Johns Hopkins.


Useful Web Resources

Citing Social Media Posts

As with everything, you must properly attribute the information presented- whether it is simple text or a video or image. To learn how to properly cite social media posts, click below on the citation style you're using:

APA     MLA 8     Chicago (Notes-Bib)     Chicago (Author-Date)

Copyright & Fair Use Overview

According to Fairfield University's Mission statement, our "primary objectives are to develop the creative, intellectual potential of our students, and to foster in them ethical and religious values and a sense of social responsibility."

If faculty and staff have questions regarding copyright, the Library can provide assistance:

  • Citing copyrighted material
  • Explaining what the licenses of Library subscriptions allow
  • Research publisher contact information for permission inquiries

The Library is not able to:

  • Provide counsel as to appropriate interpretations of “fair use”
  • Offer legal advice

Specific questions about usage of copyrighted material should be directed to University counsel, in the President’s Office.

Fair Use

What is Fair Use? If you want to determine whether you have the right to use a copyrighted work, ask yourself questions about your intended use of the material. The text below is directly from the Copyright Law of the United States of America.

"§ 107 . Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use40

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include— 

(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;

(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors."

To keep up on the current legal aspects of Fair Use, see Stanford University's Fair Use page.


Film Screenings for Clubs and Classes

When you want to show a film, video, or television program, whether it be as part of a course, at a group or club activity, at an organization event, or as a training exercise, you have to consider the rights of the those who own the copyright to the work you want to use. This consideration must be made regardless of who owns the video or where you obtained it. Copyright owners have certain rights, which are commonly known as public performance rights (PPR).

Protip* Check Kanopy for titles first. Our license agreement with Kanopy allows us to screen films to audiences on campus, whether as part of a class or not! That means: no additional PPR fees.

Public Performance Rights FAQ


Q: I'm a professor and I want to show a film outside of the classroom. I'd like to invite the university community and the public. What do I need to do?

A: You will need to acquire public performance rights in order to legally screen the film. Even though this is for educational purposes, taking the film out of the classroom setting and inviting guests other than your students qualifies your film as a "public performance". (Fair use covers film use in face-to-face classroom and some distance learning settings.) 

Q: The film I want to show is on Netflix. Can I stream this through my Netflix account in the classroom?

A: Netflix allows one-time educational screenings of some Netflix Original documentaries. For more information, see Netflix's policy on Educational Screenings of Documentaries. Subscription services such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon have very detailed membership agreements that may forbid the streaming of subscribed content in a classroom or other public venue. When you agree to the terms of membership, you enter into a contract and the terms of that contract trump any applicable exception in copyright. Therefore, if the membership agreement with Netflix prohibits the showing of the film in a classroom, you are bound by the terms of that agreement even if the face to face teaching exception would otherwise allow it. We encourage instructors who plan to show films as part of their class, particularly when the class is taught online, to investigate the availability of films through Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and other subscription or short term rental streaming services and to require their students to access that content on their own through their own subscription or account.

Q: I'm a student and my club or organization wants to show a film. What do I need to do?

A: You will need to acquire public performance rights in order to legally screen the film. The showing of a film as part of a film series is viewed as entertainment even if hosted or sponsored by an educational group or club. No matter how educational the setting or how tied to the curriculum, this is generally considered not to be fair use and PPR must be obtained.

Q: What are public performance rights?

A: PPR are license agreements made with a film's rightsholder granting an individual or a group the legal right to publicly screen a film. Usually a PPR license is purchased for a fee, and it usually only covers a one-time screening of the film.

What do we mean by publicly? Any group of persons screening a film to any audience. Exemptions include home-use, face-to-face classroom teaching, and in some cases distance learning classes.

Q: How much do public performance rights usually cost?

A: Typically between 200-300 dollars for a one-time showing, sometimes more, sometimes less.

Q: How do I acquire public performance rights?

A: Generally speaking, PPR can be purchased through a film's distributor. There are several large movie distributors and public performance rights licensing agencies that own the rights to hundreds of well-known films.

How/Where to Obtain PPR

Copyright Licensing Agents

Broadcast Music, Inc represents over 350,000 creators of music, the songwriters, composers and publishers of more than 6.5 million musical works

American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) licenses the right to perform songs and musical works created and owned by the songwriters, composers, lyricists and music publishers who are ASCAP members and also those members of foreign performing rights organizations who are represented by ASCAP in the United States.

Criterion Pictures USA is one of the largest non-theatrical providers of feature films in North America. In the United States, Criterion has exclusive relationships with some of Hollywood's largest film Studios, such as Paramount Pictures (select titles only), 20th Century Fox, Fox SearchLight, DreamWorks Animation, Troma Films, and New Concorde, among others.

Motion Picture Licensing Corporation is an independent copyright licensing agency that provides the Umbrella License to ensure copyright compliance for the public performance of motion pictures.

If you need help with obtaining PPR, contact a librarian

Citing Your Sources

The links below point to brief informational guides for creating accurate citations. For more complete information, consult the original books at the library (see call numbers below) or contact a librarian.




The cover art for the 7th edition of the APA manualRef. BF 76.7 .P83 2020




Author-Date 17th ed

Notes-Bibliography 17th ed

Ref. Z 253.U69 2017

Online Manual






Ref.  LB2369.G53 2016





 Full IEEE Manual

Questions about Citations? Save time, ask a Librarian!

Ask a Librarian

Still not finding what you need? A Librarian is available to help!

Photo of research librarians

Schedule a Research Appointment Chat with a librarian 24/7 Research Services Hours