Course Catalog

In 2016, NNIP and Microsoft’s Civic Technology Engagement Group launched a project to expand training on community data and technology for government and nonprofit staff members. It includes a brief summarizing the training landscape and action steps for various stakeholders, a guide for organizations interested in providing training, and a fact sheet summarizing results from a survey on current content and practices.

This catalog highlights examples of training courses from around the country that advance data and technology literacy. It includes descriptions and downloadable materials for primarily in-person trainings that have been conducted by local data intermediaries, nonprofits, universities, government agencies, and others. We encourage you to browse and adapt the materials to embark on training for your own community. If you would like to contribute a course to the catalog, send a note to nnip@urban.org.

Unless otherwise noted, this materials contributed to this catalog are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, which means you can share (copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format) and adapt (remix, transform, and build upon the material). 

Creative Commons License

Civic Data and Excel

Introduces Excel as a powerful tool for analyzing and visualizing open data
Author:
Microsoft

Course Categories:
Local Data Website
Software

Civic Innovation Fellowship

Offers a unique example of training college students to empower neighborhood-based elected officials on use of data and technology
Author:
BetaNYC

Course Categories:
Work-related Task

Conducting a Community Needs Assessment

Offers strategies and methods for crafting needs assessments based on national, state, and local data resources and primary data collection methods
Author:
The Children’s Trust

Course Categories:
Work-related Task

Data 101 with Community Facts

Illustrates basic data concepts using a local data portal by having participants complete a “data plan,” going from a basic question to data-informed analysis
Author:
Shift Research Lab, The Piton Foundation

Course Categories:
General Data Literacy
Local Data Website

Data 101: Data Visualization, Data Literacy, and Storytelling

Teaches foundational data literacy, including exploration of basic concepts in data visualization, storytelling, and mapping—all using printed materials without computers
Author:
Western Pennsylvania Regional Data Center and Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Course Categories:
General Data Literacy

Data Literacy

Introduces the Four C’s of understanding data—correlation, characteristic, comparison, and correlation—and has in-class exercises that can be adapted to other local websites.
Author:
Data Spark, University of Rhode Island

Course Categories:
General Data Literacy
Local Data Website

Data Sharing, Storage, & Consent

Describes the importance of data collection and security
Author:
Community Research Institute, Grand Valley State University

Course Categories:
Work-related Task

Data Training for Cities in South King County

Teaches participants to use qualitative and quantitative data to tell compelling stories about their communities and engage key stakeholders
Author:
Public Health– Seattle and King County

Course Categories:
General Data Literacy
Local Data Website
National Data Source
Work-related Task

Data Usability: Designing Data for Consumption

Introduces city employees to time-saving data management, cleaning, and design concepts to simplify reporting and data analysis. Also included post-training survey to measure impact.
Author:
DataSF, City of San Francisco

Course Categories:
Software

Desktop GIS 101: Analyzing Data and Creating Maps

Includes detailed exercises to walk students through introductory GIS, mapping, and spatial analysis
Author:
University of Minnesota

Course Categories:
Software

Environmental and Sustainability Data Workshop

Introduces beginners to different types of data and their limitations in local use, it also links to research and citations for measuring sustainability
Author:
Data Driven Detroit

Course Categories:
General Data Literacy
Work-related Task

How to Use Census and Other Data Sites

Trains participants to use American FactFinder to access publicly available datasets for local needs and introduces additional related tools, such as OnTheMap and the QWI Explorer
Author:
Neighborhood Nexus

Course Categories:
General Data Literacy
Local Data Website
National Data Source

Introduction to Data Analysis with R

Offers advanced training using an open-source software package available for free and applicable anywhere
Author:
US Department of Commerce

Course Categories:
Software

Logic Models: How to Integrate Data Collection into Your Everyday Work

Coaches local nonprofit program staff to understand how to create and measure outcomes using national and local data sources
Author:
Community Research Institute, Grand Valley State University

Course Categories:
Work-related Task

Navigating the Quality of Life Explorer

Offers detailed exercises for navigating the local website to access local data
Author:
City of Charlotte

Course Categories:
Local Data Website

Out of the Spreadsheet and Into the Community

Introduces data to nontechnical audiences using open-source tools and creative approaches
Author:
MIT Center for Civic Media

Course Categories:
General Data Literacy

Performance Analytics: Tools & Techniques

Provides local government employees foundational skills to understand and implement open data and performance analytics programs in their communities
Author:
GovEx

Course Categories:
Work-related Task

Performing a Community-Based Assessment

Offers a well-documented curriculum for using qualitative and quantitative data to conduct a community needs assessment
Author:
UCLA Center for Health Policy Research

Course Categories:
Work-related Task

SAVI Overview: How to Use the SAVI Website

Provides an overview on how to navigate a local data website in preparation for attending more-advanced data courses
Author:
The Polis Center at IUPUI

Course Categories:
Local Data Website

Step-by-step guides on simple technology to better serve voters, candidates, and poll workers

Includes a wide range of introductory training documents for work-specific tasks like social media management, Excel, and Google Forms
Author:
The Center for Technology and Civic Life

Course Categories:
Work-related Task

The Hitchhiker's Guide to Data Science for Social Good

Provides a comprehensive toolkit to build a data-based project for social good
Author:
University of Chicago

Course Categories:
Software
Work-related Task

Using Census Data for Grant Writing and Community and Neighborhood Analysis

Teaches participants about using both local and national data sets like the American Community Survey and Decennial Census to inform their work, such as understanding the demographics of their service areas.
Author:
CI: Now

Course Categories:
Local Data Website
National Data Source
Work-related Task

Using Data to Improve Health Services

Includes explanation of demographic and health data and best practices for using data to create community profiles
Author:
Charles Rynerson
Sheila Martin

Course Categories:
National Data Source

Using SAVI to Support Grant Applications

Teaches participants how data from a local data website can support stronger grant applications
Author:
The Polis Center at IUPUI

Course Categories:
Local Data Website
Work-related Task

Using Small Area Data

Shares the importance of neighborhood context in understanding client needs and teaches how to geocode client data and map it alongside neighborhood indicators
Author:
NeighborhoodInfo DC

Course Categories:
National Data Source
Software
Work-related Task

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