The Centre for Investigative Journalism
The Centre for Investigative Journalism

Data for the Educator

From revealing the financial secrets of the global elite to exposing cheats in sports, some of the most impactful stories in recent years have gone far beyond the traditional tools of journalism and used technology, data and code to report stories like never before.

Broadly referred to as “data journalism”, these skills have enabled reporters to cover stories that might otherwise have been unreachable and tell them in ways that are compelling and relevant to the reader. Data journalism covers everything from statistics to visualisations, and provides the tools to query millions of documents, scrape the web to create new datasets, or use satellite imagery to tell untold stories of our ever changing climate.

This course will cut through the confusion, demystify the jargon and provide you, the teacher, with the basic skills you need to be teaching. It will also suggest ways to teach these skills in the most inspirational and engaging way possible and give you confidence in assessing your students abilities to use data in their careers.

It will include:

  • What data journalism is & what people are doing with it
  • The core data skills every journalist should know
  • What employers are looking for
  • Suggestions of how to teach specific aspects of data journalism
  • The right sources and communities to be plugged into to stay up to date with the latest tools and tricks.

The course is composed of four sessions of around 2 hours each, scheduled over four days, with exercises and recommended reading to augment your learning between sessions. Signed-up participants must attend all four sessions.

Classes for this course are capped to keep them small and ensure practicality and interactivity.



Technical Requirements

This course will need you to have the following software/apps/tools on your computer:

  • MS Excel 2016 or newer (If do not have access to Excel, there is a free trial version available). We encourage the use of MS Excel (that is, the desktop “app”: the online version of Office 365 lacks some of the features you will need). If necessary, you can use Google Sheets, which has slightly different menus and instructions – these are documented in the online materials, but the trainer doesn’t always have the opportunity to demonstrate both systems in the session: he will certainly try, but you may find you need to do some extra work outside the session to catch up.
  • Zoom app. During these sessions the trainers often need participants to be able to share their screen in order to solve problems or demonstrate techniques: if you are on a work computer, or other device which has screen sharing on Zoom disabled, please consider getting the restriction lifted for the duration of this course. If you can’t share the screen because the function is blocked or disabled, it makes it much harder to solve problems and learn from them. But, rest assured, nobody will be forced to share their screen against their will.
  • Camera and audio
  • This course will be hosted on Zoom. To find out more about how we use Zoom, please check out our Zoom InfoSec page.

Course Structure

Exercises and additional viewing of tutorial videos will be provided to supplement the training between sessions.


Our training is not recorded: if you miss a session, it is lost – you cannot watch a recording of it, nor will you be allowed to attend that session at a later date.

2 September 2024 – Module 1


3 September 2024 – Module 2


4 September 2024 – Module 3


5 September 2024 – Module 4


Jonathan Stoneman

Jonathan Stoneman is a freelance trainer specialising in data journalism. He has been working with data since 2010. Before that he worked at the BBC – as a reporter, producer, editor of output in Macedonian and Croatian, and finally as head of training at BBC World Service.

Leila Haddou

Leila Haddou is former data journalism editor for The Times and Sunday Times. Before that, she worked on investigations at the Financial Times and the Guardian. She has an avid interest in how technology can aid investigative reporting and co-organises the monthly Journocoders meet up event.

Roberto Belo-Rovella

Roberto Belo-Rovella is a freelance learning facilitator with experience in visual journalism and digital skills training. Before that he worked at BBC News, where he led the visual and data journalism teams for the World Service’s 40 languages, producing original content formats and special reports.

Booking Form

  • 2 September 2024 10.00–12.00 Timezone: BST (UK Time)
  • 3 September 2024 10.00–12.00 Timezone: BST (UK Time)
  • 4 September 2024 10.00–12.00 Timezone: BST (UK Time)
  • 5 September 2024 10.00–12.00 Timezone: BST (UK Time)
Timezone: BST (UK Time)
Location: Zoom meeting
Large Media/Education/NonProfit Organisations (10+ staff)

One ticket per person.

In line with our non-profit mission, our pricing operates on a sliding scale, ensuring large organisations pay more to subsidise places for smaller newsrooms, freelancers and students.

**Employed individuals who cannot have their employers pay for the course are entitled to the freelancer rate. Note that we are a small charity and rely on your honesty so please do not register as a freelancer if your employer is reimbursing you for the course.

We have a strict policy of No Refund and No Transfer of bookings.