Agenda for July 2 (This week)

  1. Review data stories
  2. Go over Flowing Data/Source blogs
  3. Discuss Data Journalism documentary
  4. Think about ways to find data –
  5. Review file types –
  6. Go over advanced operators:
  7. Review tips:
  8. Complete and hand in this worksheet:
  9. Use techniques we discussed in class today to find data sources:
    1. What topic do you want to search? Write 5 search terms related to your topic.
    2. Think about your topic and search the Data Hub, World Bank, United Nations and UK Data Archive (all referenced here:, as well as (which we didn’t talk about, just looking for you to explore). Identify 2 data sources of interest from each of those sites, and record them and why they are interesting (should be a total of 10).
    3. Use techniques we discussed in class today to find at least ten different interesting data sources on your beat. At least five should be a form of structured data (xls, csv, xlsx), one should be a pdf and two should be others (listed below). Record how you accessed this information (what you entered into Google search) and write 2-3 sentences for each set describing what you found, and how it might be useful). One search should be by site type, one by link, and at least five by filetype.


csv – comma-separated values
xls/xlsx – Excel

pdf – unstructured data

xml/json – structured data, not spreadsheet
ppt – internal presentations
kmz/kml/shp – geographic data

Assignments for July 9 (Next week)

  1. Read about interviewing data
  2. Create your own data source. Think of a topic you’d like to collect information on for your beat. Lay out at least five columns of info you want to collect, and collect at least five records. Could be info about sources you talk to, to create a rolodex. Could be about different locations (banks, countries, etc).
  3. Complete in-class assignment on finding data sources on a topic you are interested in from Google and data archives if not already done
  4. Choose one of the data sources you found to play with and select it for next week, should be related to a possible final project idea
  5. Look at the headers of that data set you selected and write down 5-10 questions that you would like to know the answers to based on your data (the reading above should help you come up with these)
  6. Send Michelle ( the one data set you have chosen, and the 5-10 questions you want to ask, by Wed. July 8 at midnight.