Advanced Multimedia 2014-2015

J216 Advanced Multimedia 2014-2015

108 Lower North Gate Tues/Thurs 2–3:30

Richard Koci Hernandez, Jeremy Rue, Paul Grabowicz

This two-semester class is for students who want to do a multimedia master’s project and specialize in digital media or multimedia reporting after graduation. While other multimedia classes are designed to give you a broad range of skills, the goal in this class is to have each student dive deeply into one or two skill sets you rally want to master and then specialize in after you graduate.

In this class students will work as a team to create and publish a digital news site on the general topic of inequality and the decline of the American dream. This topic is very broadly defined and encompasses all the different aspects of inequality (economics, politics, race, health, education, environment, business, etc.), so students will be able to pursue stories on subject matter of particular interest to them. Students also will be able to focus on the technical skills they really want to master. And by working as a team on a digital news site you'll get experience in the kind of environment you'll encounter when you go to work for an online media company or if you decide to launch your own digital publication.

Creating and developing the site will include these tasks:

    • defining all the different audiences that are impacted by inequality
    • designing and developing a website that will engage those audiences
    • creating a site and apps optimized for mobile devices
    • developing a social media strategy
    • producing multimedia story packages
    • creating databases and data visualizations
    • producing news games and interactives
    • attracting user generated content
    • writing an ethics policy
    • coming up with a business plan and revenue models

Students will be able to complete their master's project requirement through their work for this site. This can be done in several ways:

      • producing a multimedia story package on some aspect of inequality
      • working on the design and coding of the website or of story packages produced by other students
      • creating interactives for the site
      • creating databases and data visualizations for the site

Students thus can select what they want to work on based on the kind of multimedia job they want to pursue when they graduate, such as a multimedia reporter, an interactive producer or a data journalist.

The class is modeled after the "News21" projects students here did in the past as part of a Carnegie-Knight funded national innovations-in-journalism-education project. Here are some of the sites Berkeley students produced for those classes:

The Ration (2011)

Behind Bars (2010)

Intersections (2009)

The course will include weekly presentations by the instructors or guest lecturers and class discussions of best practices in digital storytelling and other topics in new media publishing that will then be applied to the development of the new site. This is designed to provide students with the knowledge needed to take on leadership roles at digital news organizations.

The Fall semester will focus primarily on designing, developing and devising various strategies for the site (social media, mobile, audience engagement, user generated content, ethics policies, etc.), as well as producing some multimedia story projects for the site, which will be launched by the end of the semester. The Spring semester will focus primarily on producing multimedia story packages, interactives, news games, databases and data visualizations, along with developing mobile apps and a business strategy and revenue models for the site.

The class meets twice a week, with the class presentations and discussions usually done on Tuesdays and lab time working on the site on Thursdays.

Restrictions and Prerequisites

This class is only for students who are doing multimedia master's projects for whom Paul Grabowicz, Richard Koci-Hernandez or Jeremy Rue are the main advisers. This class must be taken in both the Fall and Spring semesters of your second year. Students should already have a solid set of multimedia skills before taking this class. These include knowing how to use video cameras, photo cameras and audio recorders; techniques for shooting and recording high quality video, photos and audio; mastery of editing software for each of the different media (especially Premiere and Photoshop) and other software applications used by journalists in multimedia storytelling; and mastery of HTML5, CSS and JavaScript/JQuery for creating complex interactive websites. Students must have taken the Online News Packages class and the Advanced Visual Journalism Class for multimedia students in the Spring of your first year, and should be taking many of the elective multimedia classes such as Coding for Journalists, Advanced Programming, Data Visualization and Data Journalism during the Fall and Spring semesters of your second year. Consult with the instructors about whether you have the requisite skills needed to take this class.

Class Email List

Students will be subscribed to a class email list. The instructors regularly send messages to the class email list with information about upcoming class sessions and updates on previous discussions, so it is very important for students to monitor these postings. If needed, please flag the class email address as non-spam and as important in your e-mail client. It is a student’s responsibility to verify you are receiving e-mail from this list and to read the e-mail messages.

Course Website

Students in the class will be given access to a website with more details on the class. This will include a weekly schedule of classes.

Restrictions and Prerequisites:

This class is only for students who are doing multimedia master's projects for which Paul Grabowicz, Richard Koci-Hernandez or Jeremy Rue are the main advisors. These students must take this class in both the Fall and Spring semesters.

Jan 27 — Introduction and review project status

Jan 29 — Lecture on design for building news packages

Feb 3 — Group meetings part 1

Feb 5 — Group meetings part 2

Feb 10 — How to create a wireframe

Feb 12 — Determine the larger umbrella site’s intention and storyboard

Feb 17 — Critique news packages that relate to masters projects

Feb 19 — After Effects / Sketch lesson part 1

Feb 24 — After Effects / Sketch lesson part 2

Feb 26 — After Effects / Sketch lesson part 3

Mar 3 — After Effects / Sketch part 4 (also Edge Reflow)

Mar 5 — Open NICAR lab

Mar 10 — What a multimedia CV looks like, what a journalism portfolio might look like

Mar 12 — Using Github for collaborative coding

Mar 17 — Guest speaker

Mar 19 — Master’s project check-in before spring break



Mar 31 — Guest speaker

Apr 2 — Newsroom Visit (AJ+)

Apr 7 — Guest speaker

Apr 9 — Guest speaker

Apr 14 — Present Rough Drafts Part 1

Apr 16 — Present Rough Drafts Part 2

Apr 21 — Let’s make an e-zine

Apr 23 — Headshots

Apr 28 — Learning to present

Apr 30 — Audio Mixing / Color correction

May 5 — Master’s Project Workshop Part 1

May 7 — Master’s Project Workshop Part 2

May 12 — Master’s Projects DUE