Topics in Audio Journalism

Place-based Audio Documentary Workshop in partnership with Queens Memory Project

Course Details

Every year we offer Special Topics courses in audio that represent special projects or course on emerging trends in audio. For Spring 2023:

In this audio workshop course, students will be introduced to the practice of place-based audio documentary. We will study and create non-linear forms of audio documentary, inspired by and/or designed to be listened to in a specific space. We will learn from documentary-makers and artists who have created participatory documentary audio walking tours and place-based audio documentary installations. We will borrow techniques and best practices from oral history, engagement journalism and non-narrated documentary formats.

For our major project, we will partner with the Queens Memory Project (Queens Public Library) as audio contributors to their ongoing Queens Name Explorer project, seeking out and recording the personal stories behind place names in the borough. Students will interview the family and/or friends and colleagues of the people for whom streets and other public spaces have been named in the borough in recent years. They will then create short non-narrated audio documentaries based on these stories to be included on the Queens Name Explorer site and presented on the NYCity News Service Site. We also hope to create QR code stickers to affix to the poles of street-signs, to prompt passersby in the neighborhood to listen to the stories on the street itself and will do in-person community outreach to publicize our work.