Storytelling Apps and Tools

google charts

There are many free applications and online tools journalists can use to make different types of stories, from interactives and graphics to data visualizations and maps. These are links to many of the most useful and popular ones and tutorials on how to use them for effective storytelling.

Google Charts

Google Charts lets you generate many different types of charts using data in a Google spreadsheet to use in your storytelling.

Google Forms for Interactive Quizzes

You can use Google Forms to create interactive quizzes.

Google Maps Engine

You can use Google Maps Engine to import a spreadsheet and plot data points on a Google map.  

Google Tour Builder

Google Tour Builder lets you use satellite maps and street views from Google Earth to create a story that moves from one geographic location to another. You can display a text box and photos or a video at each point in the story.

Illustrate your data and create more than 30 chart types using Anything from bubble charts and treemaps to simple pie charts.


StoryMapJS is a free tool to help you tell online stories that highlight the locations of a series of events. It was developed at the Knight Lab at Northwestern University.


Turn images into interactive graphics.


TimelineJS is an open-source tool that enables you to build visually rich interactive timelines. It was developed at the Knight Lab at Northwestern University.

About this Tutorial

This Storytelling Apps and Tools tutorial was written by Paul Grabowicz, Richard Koci Hernandez and Jeremy Rue

Republishing Policy

This content may not be republished in print or digital form without express written permission from Berkeley Advanced Media Institute. Please see our Content Redistribution Policy.

© 2020 The Regents of the University of California