Explaining in a light-hearted manner

The Martlet has published a great story in the vein of Vox in which they break down a university board meeting and answer some of the more pressing questions that readers may be asking. For Board of Governors and Senate meetings, this might prove a valuable format. We should be more conscious of how effectively our audience can digest the information we publish.  Just as we don’t get bogged down in specific scientific details,  Senate bureaucracy can be just as confusing.


Planning the Investigation

This booklet is a good resource for planning out an investigation. It explains the differences between story ideas and hypotheses. It also provides tips for working with budgets and timelines.

An online version of Planning the Investigation can be found here.

Course: Doing Journalism with Data, First Steps, Skills and Tools

This is a free, video-based course on data journalism available online. It has lectures, tutorials, assignments, readings and discussion forums.

The course has modules which teach journalism students how to find ideas with data analysis, managing messy data and telling stories with visualizations. It is taught by five journalism experts, including university professors and professionals specializing in data.

The course can be found here.

Course: Whose Truth? Tools for Smart Science Journalism in the Digital Age

“As journalists, we ignore science not only at our own peril, but at the peril of our readers, viewers and listeners.

In this course, you’ll learn to how make sense of scientific data and tell stories in ways that connect with your audience. You’ll get techniques and tips to improve your interviewing and reporting skills. You’ll also learn how to lift the veil from front groups to launch investigations based on informed fact-gathering.

When you’re done, you’ll have a toolkit of ways to identify and overcome the barriers journalists face when reporting on science-related topics.”

This paid Poynter course is available here. Editors and staff should contact the Gazette editor-in-chief for access to the course.

The laws and ethics of investigation

This booklet and the accompanying exercises are a resource for understanding the rights of journalists under international human rights codes, precautions investigative journalists should took to protect themselves from civil suits and potential defences against such litigation. A number of other relevant investigative and legal elements are also discussed.

The online version of The Law and Ethics of Investigation can be found here.

Uncovering New Stories On Campus

This volume of the Investigative Reporters and Editors Journal focuses on hidden stories on university campuses and how to go about looking for them. It’s an excellent starting point for new story ideas and a must-read for campus journalists.

The IREJ is available with subscription only. Editors and staff should request the editor-in-chief for access to the Gazette’s copy.

Core Skills for the Future of Journalism

“Creating a successful journalist is not like passing a recipe down through generations. There is no single fixed formula of core skills that journalists need to be successful. It is a list that is forever changing and evolving, just like journalism itself.”

Core Skills for the Future of Journalism is a Poynter Institute publication by Howard I. Finberg and Lauren Klinger. The online version can be found here. 

Story-Based Inquiry: A manual for investigative journalists

“This manual provides a guide to basic methods and techniques of investigative journalism, and it consciously fills a gap in the literature of the profession. The majority of investigative manuals devote a lot of space to the subject of where to find information. They assume that once a reporter finds the information he or she seeks, he or she will be able to compose a viable story. We do not share that assumption. We do not think that the basic issue is finding information. Instead, we think the core task is telling a story.”

An online version of the Story-Based Inquiry: A manual for investigative journalists can be found here.