Viewing Facilities

Askwith In-House Viewing

Materials may be viewed in the AML viewing facility. Priority is given to students viewing material for U-M courses or for course-related research. Patrons are encouraged to make viewing appointments in advance. A University ID or picture ID is required to use the viewing facility. Viewing items for personal or entertainment purposes is allowed and anyone including non-University affiliates can use our viewing stations as long as a photo ID is presented.  

Please be prompt for viewing appointments. If you are late, you run the risk of not completing your screening before the next scheduled appointment. Appointments will be held for 10 minutes and then will be given to another patron if there is demand for space. If you are unable to keep your appointment, please contact us (764-5360) so that we may offer use of the item and the viewing station to other patrons.

The viewing facility, located in Room 2002 of the Shapiro Library, consists of seven four-person and three two-person viewing stations. All the stations have multi-region DVD and VHS videocassette players. Three stations have blu-ray players. Specialized equipment is also available including multi-format VCRs (can play NTSC, PAL, and SECAM videocassettes), a 16 mm film projector, an audio cassette player and a laserdisc player. Please request special equipment beforehand if possible.

Shapiro Screening Room

The Askwith Media Library Screening Room is a facility that provides faculty, staff, and students (with faculty or staff as contact) of the University of Michigan a convenient space for media viewing. 

  • Location:  Second floor of the Shapiro Library building, room 2160
  • Hours:  Askwith Media Library Hours
  • Capacity: up to 49 seats
  • Equipment and Formats:  The Screening Room accommodates a range of media, including 16mm film, VHS, laserdisc, DVD (multi-region), Blu-Ray, and computer projection.  The Screening Room features a multimedia projector with surround sound, as well as a computer for accessing digital media, software, and internet. 
  • Other Features:  The Screening Room also contains a meeting table and whiteboard space for group discussion.
  • Who May Use: The Screening Room is open to reservation by all UM faculty, staff, and students.Students are required to have a faculty or staff contact person to reserve and use the room. In the case of conflicting requests, priority consideration will be given to faculty and instructors.

Purpose of Use

  • Priority use of the Screening Room is for the academic viewing of course-related media.
  • Faculty, staff, and students may also screen self-produced media.  For this material, the Library is responsible neither for the physical media nor its content; the creator assumes all responsibility for the content of the media being screened and any risk of wear or damage caused by Screening Room equipment.
  • When not reserved, the Screening Room may also be used as a meeting area for U-M Library staff.  Any request for use of the room as a meeting space by non-library personnel must be made to Askwith Media Library and will be considered on a case-by-case basis (see Regulations below).


  • The Screening Room may be reserved for up to 6 hours per day per user, with no more than 15 hours per week per user. Time use variations will be given if room is available.
  • Requests may be made via email or by phone (764-5360) during weekday working hours .
  • To ensure room availability, users are asked to make reservations at least one week prior to the desired date.
  • Users may cancel their reservations without penalty any time before the start of the reserved session.  Cancelations with no warning will result in the user being “charged” for the time reserved.
  • Walk-ins are accepted if the Screening Room is not reserved for that time period.
  • All users must fill out and sign the Screening Room User Agreement Form prior to each session – the Library recommends the user (or primary user in a group reservation) arrive approximately 15 minutes prior to the scheduled session in order to complete the form and oversee set-up of the media to be viewed.
  • All users must leave their MCard or other valid photo ID at the Askwith desk during use of the Screening Room; ID will be returned at the end of the session. Only one user from each group reservation must provide ID.
  • Please inform staff of media needed for presentation when reserving room. Askwith staff encourages users to visit the screening room before the event to set up or run through operation of equipment.

Access to the Room

  • Upon arriving for a reservation, the user will be escorted to the room by an assistant who will then set up the equipment as needed. The assistant will stay long enough to ensure everything is operating smoothly.
  • At the end of each session, the user will inform the Askwith staff that they have finished; the student assistant will shut down and lock up the room, and return any media owned or checked out by the user.
  • All equipment is locked in a separate room. Should technical difficulties occur during viewing, please contact the staff at Askwith.

Copyright and Public Performance

  • All users should read and understand the copyright policy of the University of Michigan.
  • The user is responsible for compliance with U.S. copyright law and for securing ALL rights for public viewing of media
  • The viewing of material by enrolled class members for academic purposes is permitted under the Fair Use doctrine of U.S. copyright law.  For non-classroom-related screenings, public performance rights must be secured by the user.  Most of the videos and DVDs in the Library do NOT automatically include public performance rights.
  • Public performance rights must be obtained by the user in the following cases:
    • You plan to show a film for your club or student organization
    • A screening is open to the public
      • Example:  an instructor showing a video as part of the curriculum, but inviting people who are not enrolled in the course to attend
      • Example:  small groups who wish to view a film for entertainment in a public space.
  • If you need to know if a title in the Askwith Media Library carries public performance rights, or if you need information on how to obtain public performance licensing for a showing, please contact staff in the Askwith Media Library by phone (734-764-5360) or email.


  • All users must comply with the standard practices and polices of the University of Michigan.
  • The Screening Room is not intended for use as a regular classroom or meeting space.
  • Food and drink are permitted in the Screening Room, although the Library asks that users please make sure the room is clean after each session.  Extreme damage of furniture or equipment due to food and/or drink may result in fines to cover repairs.
  • Although every effort will be made to comply with users’ needs, the Library reserves the right to change or cancel reservations at any time for any reason.
  • Failure to comply with these policies may result loss of usage privileges.
Page maintained by Cara Slavens
Last modified: 08/01/2014