Journalism 772 and 472: Computer-Assisted Reporting

Philip Merrill College of Journalism

University of Maryland

Summer 2008


Student presentation Web sites

and Web sites for issues in the news:


Past semesters



Sample Format For Submitting Your Links:




The U.S. Department of Transportation


The National Transportation Safety Board


Office of Hazardous Materials Safety


Searchable Database


National Highway Traffic Safety Administration


Downloadable Database


The Office of Hazardous Materials Safety




“Rails Carry a Growing Risk;

With train traffic through the region surging,

a close call after a recent derailment in San Bernardino raises the question:

Are we ready for a real disaster?”


By Phil Pitchford, Ben Goad, David Danelski and Mark Kawar

The Press-Enterprise, San Bernardino, CA

November 20, 2005



Sites for class discussion:


A Jour 774/474 sampler of news sites:



Sites for student presentations:




James – Executive branch



The U.S. Department of Commerce


State and Local Government on the Net


Montgomery County e-Subscriptions


U.S. Office of Government Ethics


Searchable Databases


Center for Responsive Politics


Federal Election Commission


D.C. Office of Contracting and Procurement (OCP)


Downloadable Databases

Federal Election Commission



“District Dodges Spending Laws;

Companies Snare Contracts With Connections, Not Competition”


By Dan Keating and David S. Fallis

The Washington Post, Washington D.C.

November 27, 2005



Janelle – Education


Wrightslaw – Teacher Quality


American Federation of Teachers – Reporter Resources


National Education Association – Achievement Gaps


National Board for Professional Teaching Standards


Education Writers’ Association


Searchable Database


Education Commission of the States No Child Left Behind Database


Downloadable Database


Maryland School Performance Report 2007 Data Downloads




“Teachers who fail”

By Chris Davis and Matthew Doig

Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Sarasota, FL

December 12, 2004


“How we did this story”


“State fights to prevent access to teacher information”




Laurie – Environment


BayStat Chesapeake


Envirolink Network – the Online Environmental Community


Environmental Protection Agency


The John Heinz Center State of the Nation’s Ecosystems Report


Maryland Department of the Environment - Water Programs


Society for Environmental Journalists


United States Geological Survey:

Real Time Water Data For Maryland (Daily Streamflow Reports)


Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission – Collection System Discharge Reports


Searchable Databases:


Environmental Protection Agency: Envirofacts Data Warehouse


EPA: Search Your Watershed


Know Your Watershed: National Watershed Network


Downloadable Database:


Maryland Reported Sewer Overflow Data (Excel files, 2001-2008)




“Aging Systems Releasing Sewage Into Rivers, Streams”

By Larry Wheeler and Grant Smith, Gannett News Service

USA Today, May 8, 2008


Searchable Database Accompanying Article:

 Sewage Discharge Violations




Cassandra – Licensed professionals


Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation

Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing


Pacific Information Resources, Inc./


Council on Licensure, Enforcement and Regulation


National Practitioner Data Bank–Public Use Data File


Federation of State Medical Boards


Searchable Databases


Maryland Board of Physicians Practitioner Profile System


California Bureau of Barbering and Cosmetology$lcev2.startup?p_qte_code=IND&p_qte_pgm_code=3300


Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation


Downloadable Databases


Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation


Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation




“Undercover probe spots more nail salon violations”

By Brad Watson

WFAA-TV News Channel 8

February 22, 2007 (7:30 AM)


“Personal Business; That Quest to Enhance Beauty Can Leave Scars”

By Sana Siwolop

The New York Times

July 14, 2002


“Beneath Gloss, Hazards May Lurk; License-Buying, Hygiene Questions Cloud Nail Salons”

By Lena H. Sun and Phuong Ly

The Washington Post

Jul 15, 2001

[Lexis Nexis sign-in required]



Liz – Transportation


Department of Transportation


Federal Railroad Administration


Insurance Institute for Highway Safety


National Highway Traffic Safety Administration


National Automobile Dealer’s Association


Searchable Database




Downloadable Database


National Transportation Safety Board Aviation Accident Database




“Deadly Teen Auto Crashes Show a Pattern”

By Jayne O’Donnell

USA Today

March 1, 2005




Nadiah – Insurance


National Association of Insurance Commissioners


Insurance Information Institute