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Journalism & Public Relations: JOUR 311

AP Stylebook

Finding Academic Experts

Most colleges and universities have online databases of faculty experts.

Finding advocates

Nonprofit organizations that advocate for an issue can be a good source of information and people to interview. But you still need to evaluate their credibility. Check the About section for their mission, for example, or their board of directors to see if they have prominent people serving.

Here are some search strategies: 

  • Google: Type in topic and OR type in topic, advocacy group,
  • Global Newsstream: Check news articles on the topic and look for people interviewed.
  • CQ Researcher: Long reports will include a Contacts section with organization names and websites and their perspective


Background for Stories: Check the Clips

Current news stories

Higher Education Stories

For higher education stories (think stories about issues on campus), you will want to check out these sources:

For News Transcripts

  • Go to the WestlawNext database.
  • Click on News.
  • Click on Transcripts.

Historical Clip Databases

State and National Background Information

Statistics and Polling Data

Another approach to finding government statistics on a topic is to use the following search in Google:

Statistics [TOPIC]

Math for Journalists

Former Los Angeles Times journalist Robert Niles offers simple explanations of the key types of math calculations and statistical descriptions that journalists are asked to make. 

Journalism & Public Relations Librarian

Finding Diverse Sources and Tips for Reporting

The Society of Professional Journalists has put together a "Diversity Toolbox" to help journalists improve their reporting. Here are a few highlights from the Toolbox as well as from the Poynter Institute, the American Press Institute, and the Women's Media Center.

  • Witness.orgA video-based site dealing with human rights issues

Long Beach Background Resources

Journalists' Toolbox