60 mins

Data Gathering for Beginners

School of Data
Are you interested in data journalism or using data to help your advocacy or social development project? Can data help you understand and analyse your challenges better but you don’t know where to start? This course is a gentle introduction to data basics where you can find data and what to do with it.
About this course:
This course is designed for human rights activists and journalists who would like to use data to support their advocacy work or tell stories. It includes a gentle introduction to some basic data concepts and will also introduce you to various ways you can source data by using data portals, searching data online or collecting your own data through surveys. You’ll also learn about verifying data so you can be sure it’s reliable. You will also dive in some common misconceptions and learn how to avoid traps like calculating the wrong average or asking leading questions in your surveys.
What do I learn:
By the end of the course you will have an understanding of how to approach data-driven stories or projects. You will learn basic data wrangling skills which will allow you to find and begin analysing data. You’ll also learn about the importance of verifying your data and some basic techniques for doing this.
What do I need to know:
This course is suitable for anyone who is interested in getting started with data and all you need to take this course is a computer. You don't need any coding, special technical skills or advanced knowledge of how to work on spreadsheets.


Milena Marin

Since 2009 Milena Marin has worked at the intersection of technology, data and social good. She is a true data wrangler who has collaborated with countless organisations from around the world to help them make the most of of their data and reach new audiences.

Hannah Williams

Hannah is a graphic designer working in both web and print. She also does copy writing now and again and have worked on a couple of public art projects. Recently she has been trying to focus more on doing work that has a positive social impact.

1.1 Introduction to course
1.2 What is data?
1.3 What is data? Quiz!
2.1 The Average Trap
2.2 Where things can go wrong
2.3 Quiz: Avoiding Common Misconceptions
3.1 Finding data
4.1 Introduction
4.2 Source verification
4.3 Content verification
4.4 Quiz: Verifying data sources
5.1 Introduction
5.2 How to design a good survey
5.3 Why validation matters
5.4 Why validation matters
5.5 Being responsible with the data we collect
5.6 Quiz: Primary data
6.1 Wrap up

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