Tag Archives: Finding Stories With Spreadsheets

FAQ: Books to read in preparation for doing a data journalism course

This is what you’ll look like after reading all of these books… (“Study of a Man Reading” by Alphonse Legros)

This latest in the frequently asked questions series is an answer to an aspiring data journalism student who asks “Would you be able to direct me to any resources or text books that might help [prepare]?” Here are some recommendations I give to students on my MA in Data Journalism

Books on data journalism as a profession

Data journalism isn’t just the application of a practical skill, but a profession with a culture, a history, and non-technical practices.

For that reason probably the first thing to recommend is not a book, but just general reading (and listening and watching) as much data journalism, and journalism generally, as possible. These mailing lists (and these) are a good start, and following data journalists on Twitter, and the hashtag #ddj, will expose you to the debates taking place in the industry. Continue reading

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My latest data journalism ebook is now finished

Data journalism book Stories with SpreadsheetsMy third data journalism ebook, Finding Stories With Spreadsheets, is now finished. It’s a book which covers a wide range of spreadsheet techniques from basic calculations like proportions through to techniques for merging datasets, looking for errors and working with dates.

I’ve tried to cover all the functions used most commonly within data journalism, including some specific to Google Sheets, but if you know of any that aren’t mentioned, or have a problem which isn’t solved by the book, I’d love to know.

Likewise, many chapters have sample datasets to try the techniques out, but I’m always on the lookout for particularly illustrative datasets or examples.

I’ll continue to add to and update the book (one of the reasons I publish with Leanpub) as I come across new techniques and examples. Let me know if you want me to add anything.