Expected Sessions

This list is designed to help you make decisions about the conference (show it to your boss!), but it doesn’t include everything we’ll be offering.

Themes and 2020 highlights:

Election 2020

  • Campaign finance questions people ask … plus yours!
  • Voter file data from toplines to deep dives to breaches
  • Dark money in the 2020 elections
  • Tracking money to candidates up and down the ballot
  • Beyond the horserace of election results graphics
  • Tracking digital ads: Learn the secrets of new political ad databases
  • How to build a live data-driven application that never crashes
  • An automated election twitterbot using R and Python
  • Finding the story: Campaign finance
  • Master class: Election 2020 data

Census 2020

  • Mining the Census for stories on any beat
  • Prepping your newsroom for Census 2020
  • Navigating data.census.gov
  • Using IPUMS data for reporting
  • Finding the story: Census data
  • Master class: Digging into Census data

Diversity and social issues

  • State of newsroom diversity reports
  • Mentoring for inclusivity and diversity
  • So you want to be an ally?
  • Finding hidden stories in undercovered communities
  • Investigating sexual assault
  • Unpacking AI’s influence in your community
  • Finding bias and inequality using data
  • Covering immigration with data

Working better

  • My own worst enemy: Overcoming impostor syndrome
  • Code buddies: Get help on your project
  • Being scrappy: Doing data journalism as a team of one
  • Breaking through coding plateaus
  • Dear diary: Best practices for keeping a data log
  • How to organize your files
  • Collaborate: An open-source tool to help newsrooms work together

Story ideas

  • Data deep dives
  • Finding data for local investigations
  • Year in CAR: Local innovation
  • Data blitz
  • International year in CAR
  • 50 databases for your arsenal

Design and data viz

  • How to make charts less bad
  • Reasoning for data visualization
  • Exploratory data viz
  • Free, easy data viz
  • Master class: Advanced design using satellite imagery
  • Hands-on Tableau, Flourish, D3 and R
  • StoryMaps in ArcGIS

Data on the beat

  • Turning courts docs into data
  • Finding the story in property records
  • Finding the story in business data
  • Finding the story in opioid data
  • Drilling into education disparities 
  • Health
  • Environment
  • Covering climate change: Beyond models and speculation
  • Inside police databases 
  • Guns
  • Covering housing from A-Z: Localizing affordable housing stories and data 


  • Career paths in data journalism
  • Turning data into characters
  • Finding and using international data
  • Natural disasters
  • Research gumbo: Redux
  • Building and telling a bulletproof data story
  • Turning data into TV gold
  • TL;DR: What to remember when you forget everything else
  • Uncloaked: Flight tracking for investigating people, planes and patterns
  • How to negotiate for data and records 
  • Machine learning for the rest of us
  • Quick-turn data stories
  • Building your own database workshop
  • How to make data findings come to life on radio
  • Beyond pictures: Turning satellite imagery into data
  • Tricks from other trades: E-discovery session
  • Beyond formulas: A statistical world view
  • FOIA from the flip side
  • Seeing the story: How to write the data-driven investigation
  • Art of the interview
  • Leading the data team


  • Mobile, data and desktop reporting tools for your newsroom
  • Burner profiles: How to safely create social media profiles for your investigations
  • Advanced data journalism through a browser
  • Social media sleuthing with Bellingcat
  • AP DataKit demo
  • Newsroom open-source tool showcase
  • Understanding how the internet works (so you can scrape the web!)
  • Inside police databases 
  • Follow the money: Using IRS nonprofit data and decoding 990s 
  • Interviewing your data
  • Open-source document dump tools


  • Educators’ meetup
  • Bringing data journalism to your student newsroom
  • AP DataKit: Install party
  • How I learn to tell stories with data

Hands-on classes

These classes take place in computer labs and are first-come, first-served. They do not require additional fees, but space is limited.

  • Excel 1: Getting started with spreadsheets
  • Excel 2: Formulas & sorting
  • Excel 3: Filtering & pivot tables
  • Excel: Advanced pivot tables
  • Excel: Importing data
  • Excel CARwash: Cleaning dirty data
  • Excel: Using string functions to manipulate data
  • Excel: Basic stats
  • Excel tricks you’ve never used
  • SQL 1: Exploring data
  • SQL 2: Grouping and summing data 
  • SQL 3: Joining tables
  • Advanced SQL: Update queries, sub-queries and more
  • SQL CARwash: Cleaning dirty data
  • R 1: Intro to R and RStudio
  • R 2: Data analysis and plotting
  • R 3: Gathering and cleaning data
  • JavaScript 1: Fundamentals and syntax
  • JavaScript 2: Hello, D3!
  • JavaScript 3: Making a map in D3
  • Stats 1: An introduction
  • Stats 2: Linear regression
  • Stats 3: Logistic regression 
  • Python 1: The fundamentals
  • Python 2: Intro to data analysis using Pandas
  • Python 3: Data cleaning and visualization
  • Python: Let’s scrape a website
  • Google Sheets: Scraping without coding
  • PDF 1: Using free online tools
  • PDF 2: Using OCR to extract data from PDFs
  • PDF 3: Batch pdf processing
  • Hitchhikers guide to APIs
  • GitHub for journalists
  • Geocoding and avoiding pitfalls
  • MySQL
  • Google Sheets: Automating tasks with the script editor
  • Advanced Tableau
  • Scraping in R
  • Command line for reporters (Mac)
  • Regular expressions for the rest of us
  • Finding the story: Using DNS search for investigative journalism
  • Finding the story: Using natural language processing in social media research 
  • Finding needles in haystacks with fuzzy matching
  • Beginner Tableau
  • Exploring networks with graph databases 
  • Csvkit, a command-line tool for reporters
  • Introduction to VisiData
  • Encryption tools for journalists
  • Datasette
  • QGIS 1: Importing and displaying geographic data
  • QGIS 2: Building your first map
  • Newsroom web scraping with JavaScript
  • Making graphics in R
  • Workbench
  • Excel PowerQuery

Classes requiring pre-registration

Hands-on workshops

In addition to the open classes, a limited number of longer hands-on workshops require pre-registration and an additional fee. Learn more about these classes.

  • PyCAR
  • Interactive data viz with D3
  • Intro to R 
  • Mastering Google Sheets: Web scraping, running scripts and other tricks 
  • ArcGIS: From spreadsheets to StoryMaps
  • First Python notebook: Data analysis on deadline 
  • Digging into data for stories: A crash course in Excel 
  • Upping your Excel game 
  • Exploring the tidyverse in R 
  • Write better Python code 
  • First graphics app: Node.js in the newsroom 
  • Web scraping with Python 
  • Interviewing your data with SQL 
  • Introduction to web development 
  • First Observable notebook: Prototyping with polish 
  • Practical machine learning for investigations with fast.ai

Master classes

Veteran reporters and editors will share their tips and strategies during these half-day workshops. Space is limited for these small-group classes. Learn more about these classes.

  • Editing the data story
  • Election 2020 data
  • Interviewing
  • Writing the investigative narrative
  • Advanced design using satellite imagery
  • Statistics for journalists
  • Digging into Census data