DATA JOURNALISM ACADEMY LAUNCHED IN CAPE TOWN

Civic tech organisation Code for South Africa launched Africa's first bricks-and-mortar data journalism academy at Codebridge in Cape Town.

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  1. The three-month-long training programme consists of a combination of theoretical and hands-on practical work in an on-site data newsroom, with sessions conducted by leading experts in journalism, data and web development.
  2. ICFJ Knight Fellow and Journalist/Editor Raymond Joseph heads up the Academy, driving the use of data as a primary source for story ideas and angles.
  3. The course begins by taking journalists through the technical detail of working with data. A requirement for admission is that journalists have a basic working knowledge of Excel.
  4. Once journalists are able to make sense of the rows, columns and numbers, they are introduced to various visualisation tools to start building their story.
  5. "Data Driven Journalism is not just about using data as a source for stories, but looking at different and interesting ways to tell those stories," said Joseph.
  6. "It is the ability to use multimedia, visualisations and interactive elements to tell stories in a more accessible way."
  7. While navigating datasets, journalists were reminded that even though they're using data as a source, the rules, ethics and practices of journalism still apply.
  8. One of the tools journalists were introduced to was Google Fusion Tables, a data visualisation tool. Participants created their first basic visualisations using a map format to show, amongst other things, which countries Africans most migrated to using a 2013 data set on migration.
  9. Go to academy.code4sa.org/stories to view these stories and visualisations.
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