Empowering learning through documentaries

In the world of documentary films, the integration of impactful content with user-friendly platforms is critical for widespread usability. This is the foundation of the partnership between Film Platform and Academic Video Online (AVON), which brings together curated documentary treasures with a robust platform designed for academic excellence.

Coming attractions

Join us this October for an insightful discussion on enhancing student engagement and critical thinking through curated documentaries with Annie Roney, co-founder of Film Platform, and Sara Archambault, filmmaker behind the documentary RIOTSVILLE, USA and Project Director of the Documentary Film in the Public Interest Initiative at Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center for Media, Politics and Public Policy. Plus, get a preview of upcoming Film Platform titles.

Meet the founders of Film Platform

Annie Roney's passion for documentary films began as a child growing up in a newsroom. “My mom produced radio documentaries, and when I was a little girl, I would stand in front of this ‘magic’ dot matrix Associated Press printer and read the stories that were falling out of its mouth almost as if they were happening to me."

A career in documentary films followed, and in 2000, Annie founded ROCO Films, a documentary distribution and production company that includes 18 Academy® Award nominated films.

Award-winning documentary producer Elinor Kowarsky shared Annie’s enthusiasm and saw an opportunity to connect to those who needed them most: students. “I wanted to ensure that documentaries were not regarded as merely entertaining content, but rather as legitimate texts with the potential to enlighten and inform.”

So, she and Annie set out to transform the way films are consumed in educational settings by creating the streaming service Film Platform.

Delivering an immersive learning experience

“Documentaries offer a unique and immersive learning experience for students and educators alike,” the duo said. “They bridge the gap between theoretical concepts and real-world applications, enhancing students' understanding of complex topics and encouraging empathy and social awareness.”

And it’s not just the scholarly impact. Documentaries also have what it takes to win the attention of today’s learners.

“Documentaries have a captivating storytelling format that grabs students' attention and sustains their interest throughout the film.”

Curation is key

But how does an educator find the right documentary? In a world oversaturated with content, trustworthy curation is more important than ever.

In Film Platform, librarians and instructors will find a diverse and expertly curated catalog, ensuring the highest quality and saving significant time.

“We meticulously select award-winning documentaries that have garnered national press coverage, indicating their impact and resonance with audiences. We offer educators a collection of works that have already demonstrated their ability to captivate and educate."

“Librarians can confidently collaborate with faculty, recommend films tailored to specific courses, and advocate for the use of documentaries in the teaching and learning process, enhancing their influence on campus.”

Register for our upcoming webinar to learn more about the power of documentaries to enrich classroom discussions and learning.