2016 Burlington Watchdog Workshop

Co-hosted by: St. Michael's College Media Studies, Journalism & Digital Arts Department and the Vermont Press Association

IRE will offer several of its core sessions, designed to improve your ability to find information on the Web quickly, point you to critical documents and data for more depth in your daily work and help you produce quick-hit enterprise stories. Workshop sessions will also give you tips on how to negotiate for records, get sources to open up and much more.

These sessions are designed for reporters, editors, and producers from small, midsize and large publications, TV, radio stations, Web-only news sites and news blogs. Freelancers, students and journalism educators are also encouraged to attend.

Join IRE's experienced trainers and a group of veteran reporters for our Watchdog Workshop Saturday, April 9th from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Get the tools and the tricks of the trade that you need to be a better, faster, watchdog journalist.

This program is made possible thanks to support from the Ethics & Excellence in Journalism Foundation.

Optional Computer-Assisted Reporting hands-on training

Sunday, April 10, 9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Attend this hands-on workshop and learn how to use Excel, a powerful electronic spreadsheet for deadline and beat reporting on budgets, salaries, election data and more. Also, learn how to dig deeper using the Internet and find valuable datasets for your stories. Class size is limited; register early to reserve a seat on a first-come, first-served basis.

Campus Map

St. Michael's College

Parking

Free parking will be available nearby for the training.

Workshop Fees

(includes a one-year IRE membership, if you are a current IRE member, your membership will be extended by one year. Attendees must meet IRE membership terms)

$55 Professional

$25 Student

$30 Optional Computer-Assisted Reporting Training (hands-on)

Registration Information

If you are a current member, please complete your registration online by logging into your member profile. Once you have logged in, click on my profile, next to the welcome and your name, select conferences and events on the left-hand side of the screen and the 2016 Burlington Watchdog Workshop.

If you are not a current IRE member, you can still register here for the workshop online.

Cancellations must be sent via email to Tricia Morgan, Tricia@ire.org. There is a $25 processing fee for professionals ($10 for students) for cancellations until the day before the event.

Refunds will not be given for cancellations on the day of, or after the event.

Workshop evaluations

Attendees can access the workshop evaluation online. We appreciate feedback from attendees as this allows us to improve the program and provide feedback to our funders.

Time and place

Saturday, Apr. 9, 2016 - Sunday, Apr. 10, 2016

St. Michael's College

Burlington, Vermont


Registration information

Registration for this event is open! Click here to begin.

Hurry! Registration closes on Sunday, Apr. 10 at 12:00pm.


Schedule details

  • Panel

    Welcome and overview

    Speaker: Alex Richards of Syracuse University

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    9:00 am - 9:15 am

  • Panel

    FOI and public records

    Speakers: Mike Donoghue of St. Michael's College; Robert Hemley of Gravel and Shea

    Learn how to use federal and state open records laws to draft records requests the right way. Covers ways to challenge denials and keep a steady flow of information coming into the newsroom with FOI.

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    9:15 am - 10:15 am

  • Panel

    Bulletproof your reporting

    Speaker: Jodi Upton of Syracuse University

    Learn how to check the facts, assumptions and public records that underpin your story. Tips for making sure your reporting, including graphics and online components, say what you think they’re saying.

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    10:30 am - 11:30 am

  • Panel

    Web, search and social media for investigators

    Speakers: Alex Richards of Syracuse University; Maggie Cassidy of Valley News

    Find documents and databases on deadline with better search techniques and the invisible Web. Learn how to locate reliable websites for enterprise stories and receive guidance on the best social media tools for your next investigation.

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    11:30 am - 12:30 pm

  • Outside Event

    See printed schedule for room information

    12:30 pm - 1:45 pm

  • Panel

    Digging deeper with data and documents

    Speakers: Jodi Upton of Syracuse University; Alex Richards of Syracuse University

    Move beyond anecdotes and he-said, she-said journalism with data and documents. Advice on developing a documents state of mind, navigating public records and understanding records retention schedules. Learn how to have a certain amount of data literacy to make the best use of surveys and other reports.

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    1:45 pm - 2:45 pm

  • Panel

    Developing sources and mastering the art of the interview

    Speakers: Stewart Ledbetter of NBC 5 Burlington; Alex Keefe of Vermont Public Radio

    Learn how to find and cultivate sources for stories. This also covers the best ways to approach them and prepare for interviews. Includes advice on conducting video interviews for your website. Plenty of tips and strategies for handling tough situations, ethical trouble spots, etc.

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

  • Panel

    Quick hit investigations

    Speaker: Alex Richards of Syracuse University

    Strategies, story ideas, resources and tips for watchdog stories on a variety of beats. How to produce meaty enterprise stories that may take a few days or a few weeks rather than months.

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

  • Panel

    Wrap-up / Getting the IRE edge

    Speaker: Alex Richards of Syracuse University

    Cheray Science Hall -- Room 101

    5:00 pm - 5:30 pm

  • Hands-on

    Optional Computer-Assisted Reporting hands-on training

    Speaker: Alex Richards of Syracuse University

    Attend this hands-on workshop and learn how to use Excel, a powerful electronic spreadsheet for deadline and beat reporting on budgets, salaries, elections and more. Also learn how to dig deeper using the Internet and find valuable datasets for your stories.

     

    NOTE: Registration is required for this session. Click here to sign up.

    JeanMarie Academic Hall -- Room 142

    9:00 am - 12:30 pm