Data Journalism and Media Standards

Course Level 3: Advanced

Estimated Study Time: 2-3 hours

This course first introduces the ever-growing set of tools, techniques, and approaches to storytelling known as data journalism. You will learn how to find data on the web, how to request it using freedom of information laws, how to use screen-scraping to gather data from unstructured sources, and use crowd-sourcing to collect datasets from readers.  You will learn how to present data using techniques such as data visualization and news applications. You will also learn about mining data and learn to recognize the four main obstacles to the use of data journalism.

Next, you will learn about the role of the free press and the standards that are in place which describe the privileges and responsibilities of a free press in a free society. The laws, statutes, and codes that determine the conduct required of news organizations are explained. You will also learn about censorship and regulation of the media. You will review how government licensing in some countries both determines who may be a journalist and circumscribes the parameters of acceptable reporting and commentary leading to self-censorship and stifling of dissent and debate.

Finally, you are introduced to the tools and resources used to hold bloggers and citizen journalists to account. You will learn how access to electronic files presents special challenges such as being over-connected which can fragment and compartmentalize public opinion.

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Course Content