At the Movies with the Library

The Chávez Library wants to be your go-to place for movies!  Whether for research or for rest and relaxation, thousands of films are waiting for you to check out or view online.

The DVD Collection Finds a New Home

Photo of DVDAfter ten years behind the circulation counter, the Library’s DVD collection comes out of the shadows.  Thanks to improvements in theft-detection technology, the Library’s 1,400 DVDs will soon be available for browsing on open-access shelving.  Discover documentaries, classic cinema, and other award-winning motion pictures that you never knew the Library owned.  Not only will you find films to help you with your studies and research assignments, but there are plenty of options that will make for an entertaining night of popcorn and nail-biting.  Listed below are a few of the “top picks” by SJCC’s movie-loving librarians.

Bob Wing
12 Angry Men
One man challenges eleven other jurors to reconsider trial evidence to prevent an injustice. The film received a 100% “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and is listed on several American Film Institute lists of best movies.

Jeanie Schwab
All the President’s Men
This is an Oscar-winning 1976 film about Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward, the two Washington Post reporters who broke the Watergate scandal that led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon in 1974. It reminds me of the importance of good investigative reporting to the survival of our democracy in light of the current rise of fake news, “alternative facts,” and the conflict between the media and the Trump administration.

Linda Meyer
Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason
When plagued by insomnia, this is the best DVD to lull me to sleep.  No loud music, no gunshots, no canned laughter – just lilting English accents and Hugh Grant’s irresistible charm!

Mary Nino
To Kill a Mockingbird
Widely considered a classic, the film was based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. One of the best adaptions of a book to movie, it is still as powerful today as it was when came out in 1962.

A New Collection Comes Online

Films on Demand LogoIn addition to making its DVDs more accessible, the Library now subscribes to Films on Demand. So, if you prefer to stream your videos, you have options beyond Netflix and Amazon.

This year the Library brings you thousands of new videos. Films on Demand provides anthropology-to-zoology coverage relevant to all SJCC courses, including career- and technical-education courses.

Online searching is user friendly.  Patrons can select from lists of the most popular or newest videos or by browsing by subjects of interest. Advance searching is available to find videos according to keywords, producers, dates, languages, and other parameters.

Films on Demand makes it easy to incorporate entire videos or just specific segments into class presentations and online course materials. Users can search for videos on specific topics and organize them into folders.  After opening a personal account, users can create and post personal playlists accessible by a selected group of viewers.

Over 600 new videos are added to Films on Demand every year from some of the world’s finest producers, including BBC, CNBC, PBS, and many more.  Closed captioning is available for many videos, and all have pre-formatted bibliographic citations. Videos are iPad, Android, PC, and Mac friendly

Students, faculty, and staff have unrestricted, 24/7 access to the database, either on or off-campus (off-campus requires login with name and SJCC ID number). Librarians are available for group or individual training in the use of this exciting new database.

Canvas Facts

As San San José City College (SJCC) commits to a single learning management system (LMS) – Canvas – the Division of Library, Learning Resources & Distance Education will commit to regular updates and insights about Canvas, which should prove useful to instructors and students alike. For example, Canvas is

  • available in over 2,000 schools across the country and around the world
  • internationally recognized; it’s used across Europe and in countries, such as Australia, Brazil, and China
  • the LMS behind the Cisco Networking Academy, which Cisco calls “the world’s largest classroom.”

Why are these points important? They’re important because SJCC students may be transferring to some of these institutions, living in some of these countries, or working for corporations that train their staff online. Many of the universities in the Bay Area use Canvas, including San José State University, Santa Clara University, UC Berkeley, and  UC Santa Cruz. Thus, SJCC’s use of Canvas is just another way to smooth the transition for SJCC students!

Canvas LogoThe Transition to Canvas

So, why is SJCC and its sister college, Evergreen Valley College (EVC), making the move from Moodle to Canvas? It’s simple, really.

Canvas helps students

  • save time and energy in locating and using course materials
  • stay up to date with their grades and progress in courses
  • integrate coursework into their daily lives; the LMS is mobile-enabled, making it a snap for students to use their smartphones and tablets.

If that last bullet point sounds more problematic and useful, you may find the Mobile Fact Sheet (Pew Research Center, 12 January 2017) useful.

Canvas helps faculty

  • reuse course material from one course to the next
  • grade assignments and calculate final grade results
  • communicate with students, via email, chat, and discussion forums
  • utilize multimedia, making it easy to add audio and video posts in just a few clicks
  • provide ease of access that meets ADA compliance standards
  • utilize open-education resources (i.e., materials licensed for educational use).

Distance Education Support

As with anything new, it can take time to get used to using a new system. The Division of Library, Learning Resources & Distance Education is here to help you.

Support for Students

If you are a student and you need some help learning to use Canvas, stop by the Learning Resource Center (LRC). Staff in the LRC can help you get started. If you cannot get to the main campus, we recommend the following:

Canvas Student Guide

Canvas Video Guide

If you are having a technical problem with the LMS, you should contact the District Information Technology Services & Support (ITSS) Division Help Desk:

Phone: (408) 270-6411
Web Address:

Support for Faculty

If you are a faculty member who needs some help learning to use Canvas, we recommend that you review the Canvas Instructor Guide, sign up for a weekly workshop, participate in a tutorial, and/or take an online course. For additional information, contact the Distance Education Coordinator or Division Dean.

Canvas Instructor Guide

Canvas Video Guide

Canvas Workshops at SJCC

Canvas Tutorials via CCC Professional Learning Network

Tutorial on (made available via CCC Professional Learning Network)

Canvas Information and Courses via CCC OEI

If you are a faculty member having a technical problem with the LMS, you should contact the District Information Technology Services & Support (ITSS) Division Help Desk:

Phone: (408) 270-6411
Web Address:

The ITSS Help Desk has set up a special page for all Canvas users who need 24/7 support and login assistance.

Canvas Login & Support Information

Happy Canvas’ing!

Umoja Students Develop Library Display

Black History DisplayIn early February, Umoja students worked with the library staff to develop a display for Black History Month.

Students in Tina Chen’s English 1A class selected “African American Influence on American Culture” as the display theme, and each student selected a book reflecting his or her interests.

Topic favorites ranged from rap music to professional sports to scientific discovery. Some of the books recommended include:

Student, faculty, and staff are invited to celebrate Black History Month with a good book. You may view a complete list of the students’ selections online.

Stop by the library and check out one (or as many) that interest you!

Extended Hours at SJSU-King Library Discontinued

SJCC-King LibrarySJCC students should be aware that the Extended Hours Program at San José State University’s King Library has been discontinued for community college students.

This popular program, funded by SJCC Associated Students, made it possible for SJCC students to use the abundant resources and ample study areas of the SJSU-King Library until 1:00 a.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 24/7 during final exam weeks.

Community college students may still use the SJCC-King Library during regular hours and may apply for a San José State University Library guest pass for extended hours; however, they must be affiliated with, and accompanied by, an SJSU student.

For additional details, consult the SJSU-King Library Guest Extended Hours Request Form.