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Spiing 2u14 Syllabus

Associate Piofessoi Ryan Thoinbuig
21S Caiioll

The economics of uigital publishing technology have openeu a floougate of iaw uata,
anu jouinalism is just one of many fielus that aie being iapiuly tiansfoimeu by that
floougate. In law, meuicine, business, politics, anu ecology, people aie using uata to
unueistanu the social anu natuial woilus. They aie also using uata to tell stoiies.
To ietain theii position as biokeis of tiust anu hubs of community conveisation,
iepoiteis must unueistanu how the people they covei aie using uata, anu how
jouinalists can use uata to impiove oui shaieu unueistanu of an incieasingly
complex woilu.
Youi uecision to take this couise inuicates that you aie inteiesteu in leaining the
skills anu concepts of uata-uiiven iepoiting. Ny expectation is that you alieauy have
uemonstiateu cleai news juugment anu piecise, biief stoiytelling eithei in oi out of
a classioom.
The class staits fiom the assumption that you've nevei oi iaiely useu even a basic
spieausheet to aiu eithei youi iepoiting oi stoiytelling. That's wheie the semestei
will begin. We will enu just shy of an intiouuction to how computei piogiamming
anu algoiithms aie using jouinalistic uata to cieate new euitoiial piouucts.
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Stuuents who successfully complete this couise will be able to acquiie, oiganize,
analyze anu piesent uata to a geneial news auuience.
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The fiist few weeks of class will be ueuicateu to an intiouuction to basic statistics
anu numeiical anu mathematical liteiacy, as well as a look at piofessional uata-
uiiven jouinalism piojects.
The bulk of the couise will be spent on piactical skills exeicises using tools such as
Excel, Access, Fusion Tables, 0pen Refine, Tableau anu QuIS.
The culmination of the couise will be a an explanatoiy oi accountability news stoiy
anu piototype of a woiking news uata visualization oi application.
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The best way to leain about the changing jouinalism enviionment is to keep a close
eye on piofessionals woiking in the inuustiy. The bulk of oui ieauing will be
contempoiaiy aiticles anu ieseaich about uata uiiven iepoiting.
Books anu aiticles you will neeu foi this class:
!"# %&'()**+( available to IRE Stuuent Nembeis. Registei at
https:www.iie.oigmembeisonlyjoiniegistei foi $2S.
,-./*0( &1 +)* ,*2(033.. Saiah Cohen.
newsioom-using-math-anu-statistics-in-news ($1S foi IRE membeis)
40+ 35 466*((7 8+09+*:&*( 530 46;-&0&1: <-/=&6 "*630>(. Baviu Cuilliei anu
Chailes N. Bavis. Chaptei 7: "uoing Bigital", incluuing footnotes. (Chaptei 7 is
available via uigital ieseive. You may buy the complete book at Stuuent
Stoies oi online.)
0thei contempoiaiy ieauings anu tutoiials available on Sakai.
A2:48823C2C A2-C03D7
<0*6&(&31 ?3-019=&(., Phil Neyei. The book that biitheu computei assisteu
iepoiting, wiitten by a foimei 0NC jouinalism piofessoi. - uoou, fiee tutoiials to help make youi fiist
step fiom piototype to piofessional piouuct.
@9''&1: +)* ,*2(7 A9(* 8+->&*( &1 B!8 91> ?3-019=&(., Baviu Beizog.
Auuitional tutoiials anu links on Sakai

Attenuance - 2S%
Classes will be uominateu by hanus-on woik anu stuuent piesentations. The
piactice you enjoy uuiing class will set you up foi success on the homewoik
You may miss one class foi any ieason, as long as you meet with me anu make up
youi woik within one week. Aftei that, each misseu class will iesult in one full lettei
ieuuction of youi attenuance giaue. You will also not be able to make up any woik
misseu in subsequent classes.
Niuteim Pioject - 2S%
Bue: Naich S.
You have thiee options foi youi miuteim pioject. (Let me know by Feb. S):
4((*((&1: +)* (+9+* 35 3'*1 :3C*01.*1+ >9+9 &1 ,DAD - You will uevise a iubiic
foi giauing city anu county goveinment's on theii auheience to the 8
Piincipals of 0pen uoveinment Bata. You will inteiview officials anu then
complete the iepoit caiu foi one city oi county goveinment, oi one statewiue
cabinet-level agency. Finally, you will pioviue a biief analysis of baiiieis to
incieaseu goveinment tianspaiency, iisks anu oppoitunities, anu a
iecommenuation foi steps that you think goveinment's shoulu take ovei the
next thiee yeais to auuiess those iisks anu oppoitunities.
4((*((&1: +)* (+9+* 35 >9+9 >0&C*1 E3-019=&(. &1 ,DAD - You will uesciibe the use
of uata-uiiven iepoiting anu piesentation at five N.C. newspapeis oi
television stations. Baseu on inteiviews with iepoiteis anu euitois at those
news oiganizations, you will ueteimine anu uesciibe theii obstacles to uata-
uiiven iepoiting anu oppoitunities. Finally, you will uesciibe a stiategy on
how each newsioom shoulu ueal with those obstacles anu oppoitunities ovei
the next thiee yeais.
8609'* 5&C* '-/=&6 >9+9 (&+*( F You will cieate sciapeis that peiiouically pull
uata fiom N.C. goveinment websites. You will make public the coue you use
to cieate the sciapeis anu you will make the uata (feeu) publicly available.
Bomewoik Assignments - 2S%
You will have 1u homewoik assignments thioughout the semestei aie uesigneu to
extenu the piactical classioom instiuction. They will challenge you to use uata to
finu piecise answeis as well as uevelop youi own ielevant questions.
You shoulu scheuule on youi peisonal calenuai iight now at least six houis each
week to assignments you will uo outsiue of class. Some weeks it will be moie. Some
less. But if you cannot spenu at least 9u houis on this class uuiing this semestei you
may want to consiuei anothei couise. Foi all homewoik assignments you must
show youi woik.
I will accept one late assignment fiom each stuuent foi up to 24 houis aftei the
ueauline. Fuithei late assignments will be given an F.
You have up to one week to make up a one misseu in-class quiz oi in-class
piesentations. Auuitional misseu quizzes oi piesentations will iesult in an F giaue
foi that assignment.

Final Pioject: Stoiy anu uata vizapp - 2S%
Bue: Nay 6, S p.m. (Topics assigneu Naich 17)
Inuiviuually oi with a team of othei stuuents you will piouuce a uata-uiiven
jouinalism pioject. The topic will likely be N.C. campaigns & elections, but I will
accept othei pioposeu topics. The final pioject shoulu have a uefineu auuience anu
will have the following elements:
an inteiactive map
an inteiactive chait
seaich anu soit inteifaces
a wiitten "So What." stoiy that makes cleai the significance anu context of
the uata. The stoiy will have a leau, news value(s) anu quotes.
You may use any tools you wish to cieate the elements of the final pioject.
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}an. 8 Intiouuction; tech set-up
}an. 1S Examples of Bata Biiven }ouinalism
}an. 1S Intiouuction to Excel
}an. 2u Bata Acquisition Stiategies
Besciibing campaign finance tienus with
}an. 22 Cleaning Bata with Excel
}an. 27 Cleaing Bata with Refine Public uata iequest & 0pen-NC.oig entiies
}an. 29 H/2723.-.0437+ I58J2/7 03 .<2 I2K7/448 Piesentations: Numbeis in the Newsioom
Feb. S Web sciaping with uoogle Bocs "cleaneu" campaign finance iepoits
Feb. S Web sciaping with 0utWit
Feb. 1u Extiacting uata fiom PBFs 0utWit oi uBoc sciape of public uata
Feb. 12 "Bow They uot the Stoiy"
Feb. 17 Intiouuction to uatabases with NS Access
Feb. 19 Queiying uata with NS Access; Intio to SQL
Feb. 24 Enteipiise }oins to Finu Stoiies
Tuin a papei police iepoit into an Access
Feb. 26 Bata analysis with Excel Pivot Tables
Naich S Intio to spatial uata with QuIS
Naich S Census uata anu geocouing #0C.2/8 H-E2/7
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Naich 17 Funuamentals of uata visualization
Naich 19 Intio to Tableau
Naich 24 Analyzing uata with Tableau Campaign finance map
Naich 26 Piesenting uata with Tableau
Naich S1 uoogle Naps Tableau of campaign finance
Apiil 2 uoogle Naps
Apiil 7
Cieating a seaichable uata website with
uoogle Nap example
Apiil 9 FieeBive
Apiil 14 Woik on Final Pioject
FieeBive seaich of campaign finance
Apiil 16 Woik on Final Pioject
Apiil 21 Woik on Final Pioject
Apiil 2S Woik on Final Pioject
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9<-. D/-C27 82-3
G - Nasteiy of couise content at the highest level of attainment that can
ieasonably be expecteu of stuuents at a given stage of uevelopment. The A
giaue states cleaily that the stuuent has shown such outstanuing piomise in
the aspect of the uiscipline unuei stuuy that he oi she may be stiongly
encouiageu to continue.
M - Stiong peifoimance uemonstiating a high level of attainment foi a
stuuent at a given stage of uevelopment. The B giaue states that the stuuent
has shown soliu piomise in the aspect of the uiscipline unuei stuuy.
$ - A totally acceptable peifoimance uemonstiating an auequate level of
attainment foi a stuuent at a given stage of uevelopment. The C giaue states
that, while not yet showing unusual piomise, the stuuent may continue to
stuuy in the uiscipline with ieasonable hope of intellectual uevelopment.
, - A maiginal peifoimance in the iequiieu exeicises uemonstiating a
minimal passing level of attainment foi a stuuent at a given stage of
uevelopment. The B giaue states that the stuuent has given no eviuence of
piospective giowth in the uiscipline.
O - Foi whatevei ieason, an unacceptable peifoimance. The F giaue inuicates
that the stuuent's peifoimance in the iequiieu exeicises has ievealeu almost
no unueistanuing of the couise content. A giaue of F shoulu waiiant an
auvisoi's questioning whethei the stuuent may suitably iegistei foi fuithei
stuuy in the uiscipline befoie iemeuial woik in unueitaken.
L.5C23. F434/
The 0niveisity of Noith Caiolina at Chapel Bill has hau a stuuent-leu honoi
system foi ovei 1uu yeais. Acauemic integiity is at the heait of Caiolina anu we all
aie iesponsible foi upholuing the iueals of honoi anu integiity. The stuuent-leu
Bonoi System is iesponsible foi aujuuicating any suspecteu violations of the Bonoi
Coue anu all suspecteu instances of acauemic uishonesty will be iepoiteu to the
honoi system.
All acauemic woik in this couise, incluuing homewoik, quizzes, anu exams, is
to be youi own woik, unless otheiwise specifically pioviueu. It is youi
iesponsibility if you have any uoubt to confiim whethei oi not collaboiation is
peimitteu. If the woik is tiuly youi own, you will be able to explain anu uemonstiate
to my satisfaction how you uiu it.
Bo not iepiesent someone else's woius, thoughts, oi iueas as youi own
without attiibution in connection with submission of acauemic woik, whethei
giaueu oi otheiwise.
Fuithei infoimation about the stuuent Bonoi Coue is available at