Link: John Keefe on Designing a Course in Data Journalism

Published 2012-11-26

When asked what such a course might look like, I point folks to Brian Boyer's theoretical and amazing Hacker Journalism 101. Journalism needs more journalists who can code, and this is a great way to get there. ...

In addition to programming, here are some of my favorite topics for classes, readings or workshops:

  • Finding data for your stories
  • Finding stories in your data
  • How to tell one story well
  • All data is dirty ... and what to do about that
  • Basic stats
  • Percentage points for journalists
  • Mapmaking made easy
  • Lying and truthing with easily-made maps
  • When maps shouldn't be maps
  • Basic chartbuilding
  • Lying and truthing with charts and graphs
  • Did I mention programming?

It's up to the individual to find what works for them, but that said, what worked for me was to first learn code to visualize data followed by learn code to gather data.

Now I need to learn code to analyze data while refining and bettering my skills in the first two areas, especially developing a better eye for visualization and when not to use the hammers I've acquired...