Data-driven storytelling training for people working in the public and private sectors who need to communicate information in an effective and easy-to-understand way


Apply now to join our open intake! In February 2018 we're running an open intake for our Source & Clean data for storytelling course. If you or your organisation are interested in joining us, check out the invitation and get in touch.

Calling all CSOs! We are happy to annouce that TrainUp is offering two free seats in our Source & Clean for data storytelling short course. If you are in Johannesburg or Cape Town complete the application form and tell us why one of them should be yours!

Source and clean

  • Find, extract and transform relevant data into a machine-readable format
  • Understand the correct way to organise, reorder and shape a dataset in order to find stories
  • Use open source tools to clean data for the purposes of analysis for data storytelling
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Analyse for storytelling

  • Develop comprehensive spreadsheet functionality
  • Interview a dataset through a journalistic lens to mine for potential stories
  • Compose basic overviews of data utilising pivot tables
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Package and present

  • Understand the basics of user experience design and wireframing for visualisation
  • Apply fundamental design principles to the production of data visualisations
  • Package and present your data to tell a compelling narrative
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Get in touch

Interested in one of our courses? Get in touch with us. Also let us know if you want to request a course. We can shape our curriculum around your internal datasets.

[email protected]

Latest news

A key ability for anyone who wants to communicate insights through data storytelling is to be able to find, extract and transform relevant data into machine readable format.

As part of our open intake, we've concluded our training in Johannesburg. Hear what participants had to say about their experience of learning how to begin telling stories with data.

Dates confirmed for Introduction to Data Storytelling in Durban & Applications close today for Johannesburg Intake!


A small selection of stories from the Data Journalism Academy newsroom

Show more stories

Frequently asked questions

Who are these courses for?

They are aimed at anyone who uses data to communicate insights to stakeholders. We have trained journalists, civil society organisations, and governments. If you're not sure if / how you can benefit from our courses don't hesitate to ask.

How much do they cost?

Our courses are R2,300 per person per day. A 50% deposit is required on registration, the balance being due before training commences. Registered non-profit organisations get a 10% discount. For large organisations interested in tailor-made courses, please get in touch.

When are your upcoming courses?

While we are still building our event calendar, our upcoming courses will be announced via our OpenUp social media accounts (Twitter, Facebook), on our TrainUp page as well as via email. If you would like to be notified via email, let us know by sending an email to [email protected] and we'll add you to our Open Intake mailing list.

We are currently planning an open intake for the first quarter of 2018. Information about this will be made available this December.

Where will training be facilitated?

Training venues for Open Intakes will be sourced in various major cities where greater interest is expressed. These venues will be communicated in advance via social, traditional media as well as on our web page.

How long are your courses?

Our courses run for between one and two days, depending on the required modules. If you want a course specifically tailored to your needs get in touch with us.

Are there any general course requirements?

Participants need access to their own laptop, an activated Google account, and access to the Google Chrome browser. More specific requirements can be found on the individual course pages.

Does OpenUp subsidise training and/or travel?

A 10% discount is available for NPOs on all courses. Travel subsidies are unfortunately not available.

Are your courses only around data?

Yes. More specifically, our courses are shaped around data processing for storytelling, which we believe to be the most effective way at conveying data-rich information.

How many people can attend a single course?

Our courses run for a minimum of 8 and a maximum of 15 learners. We require a minimum number of participants to be cost effective and a maximum to ensure we can dedicate enough time and attention to each participant.

What is the cost of internal organisational
training per course?

We compile modules for internal training for organisations based on a consultative process to ensure that we cover content suitable for the organisation's needs. We also provide the option to shape curriculum for internal training around an organisation's own data, to ensure the relevant skills transfer.

Why isn’t your training free?

TrainUp consists of two main endeavours:

Firstly, through our Codebridge grant we fund data literacy training for identified segments of the population i.e. youth, school children, or those who are unable to afford commercial training opportunities.

We are publishing tutorials and content on basic data literacy knowledge and skills, as well as open software usage, for free. Additionally, our material is shared with the School of Data, with whom we collaborate on curriculum development.

Secondly, TrainUp courses are facilitated at commercial rates as a profit stream that contributes to the sustainability of our organisation and in support of our other projects. Our TrainUp curriculum will equip learners with the skills our team has acquired through the practise and teaching of this material, as it relates to the Data Processing Pipeline.

Why data literacy?

An understanding of data and its potential is needed to make effective use of it. TrainUp aims to create storytellers who know how to use data effectively and empower society so they understand this data in order to drive social change.

Why storytelling?

Data by itself is dry, impersonal, and distant. Our experience with civil society organisations, governments, and news organisations has taught us the power of storytelling, and we believe it to be the best way to impart information. Our courses are designed to help you find and create compelling stories from data so you can most effectively communicate with your stakeholders.

Do you have more questions?

Who we've taught

Get in touch

Interested in one of our courses? Get in touch with us. Also let us know if you want to request a course. We can shape our curriculum around your internal datasets.

[email protected]