The importance of computer-assisted reporting

Today we heard from David Herzog, who teaches the computer-assisted reporting classes at Mizzou. The basic computer-assisted reporting class is something that I need to take in order to graduate with an emphasis in investigative journalism, but until this lecture, I wasn’t really sure what it was.

Sure, one might be able to guess that it has something to do with using computers to do reporting. Duh. But it’s so much more than that! Herzog talked about how computer-assisted reporting is the backbone of many famous investigative pieces, and how it really should be used everywhere in the newsroom.

Computer-assisted reporting deals with anything from spreadsheets and databases to calendars and documents. It truly is the base of everything we do in journalism today. And being able to understand these data sources is crucial! Without having a full understanding of the data that we use in journalism, so much would slip by us. Computer-assisted reporting makes journalism possible.

So, after hearing that there were a couple spots still open for the basic computer-assisted reporting course for the fall semester, I very quickly claimed a seat. I’m excited to learn more from Herzog and hopefully obtain a greater understanding of the data world and its effect on journalism.

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