Author Archives: jkbiehl

About jkbiehl

Jody Biehl is the Director of the Journalism Certificate Program at University at Buffalo.

End of the line — What have we learned?

Today we will:

  • Listen to Jerry Seinfeld on writing
  • Discuss news of the day
  • Look at NYT feature story on Grand Canyon and apply what we have learned
  • Fill out course evaluations

On Writing

News of the Day

NYT: Grand Canyon

Science Journalism programs

Notable books of 2014


The Future of News

Today we will:

  • Discuss news of the day — apply what you have learned in this class to current news stories
  • Discuss final pieces — answer questions
  • Discuss grades
  • Discuss the future of news — why there is reason to be optimistic about journalism

News roundup

The Future of Journalism

Esquire: Luke O’Neill — lousy reporting and online hoaxes show that “traffic at all costs mentality” costs. Lose veracity, newsworthiness, relevance

Homework: Finish final pieces. They are due in class Dec. 4. If you want your final piece back, please bring a stamped, self-addressed envelope with your piece.

Snow reports, books and workshopping big pieces

Today we will:

  • Discuss news of the day, including snow storm coverage
  • Talk about books you might consider reading over break and beyond
  • Workshop your big pieces

News Roundup


Homework: Work on major pieces.

Read: UCAR: Burning Questions about Winter Cold — be ready to talk about the piece — is it good science or bad? Good writing or bad? — on Tuesday, Dec. 2.

Reporting on the environment

Today we will:

  • Discuss news of the day
  • Hear news checks
  • Discuss environmental reporting
  • Discuss Field Guide Chs 32-33
  • Discuss final papers (get back edits)






Clean Air Coalition


Speaker Tuesday: Dan Telvock, Investigative Post

Society of Environmental Journalists

Homework: Read Dan Telvock’s reporting on Scajaquada Creek and other Buffalo issues in Investigative Post and on Channel 2.  Come with five written questions. At least three must come from his reporting.

In-class Editing

Today we will:

  • Discuss news of the day
  • Hear news checks
  • Edit each others’ drafts of Assignment 4
  • Discuss profiles/see grades on final pieces

News of the Day


  • Read Field Guide Chapters 32 and 33
  • Think about environmental issues in Buffalo and be ready to discuss
  • Work on assignment 4

Editing for focus — the art of rewriting

Today we will:

  • Talk about news of the day
  • Hear news checks
  • Troubleshoot your pieces
  • Talk about editing
  • Talk about Is Facebook Making Us Lonely?



  • Work on your drafts for final piece. Bring a copy to class on Tuesday to be edited by peers in class
  • Read (for following week) Field Guide Chapters 32-33. Think about Buffalo’s biggest environmental issues

Reading Like a Writer

Today we will:

  • Discuss the news – including elections
  • Hear Newschecks
  • Finish editing/revising the profile leads
  • Discuss editing — RPC
  • Discuss Zinsser 21 and 22
  • Discuss Heights of Fear — look for lead, nut, sources, quotes, statistics, order of thoughts


Heights of Fear


  • Read: Is Facebook making us lonely? Be prepared to discuss topic, research, reporting and writing.
  • Work on final pieces: first draft due Nov. 11