Teaching & Learning
Less than a decade ago, seventy-percent of instructors noted that they use Wikipedia often, but stated that they would never allow their students to use Wikipedia.1 Now, instructors are shifting their thinking away from Wikipedia as a source for completing assignments, instead of using class materials as a way to improve Wikipedia. All in all, there tends to be a pedagogical shift towards how Wikipedia can enrich traditional teaching and how it can be harnessed as a tool for gaining refined digital literacy skills.
Wikipedia learning involves a series of valuable skills including understanding how to assess Wikipedia articles for reliability, when to utilize and not to utilize Wikipedia content and sources based on these reliability standards, how to write Wikipedia articles based purely on academic or reliable sources through a neutral gaze, and critically reflect on these processes.2 Alongside this, necessary research skills are gained through the process of compiling sources based on these standards. At the end of the project, students will have created an article that will live past the assignment end date, adding a social responsibility component to the assignment. By watching their article over time, they will notice changes and have to engage in friendly discussions with other editors to discuss the betterment of the page.
Find out more about the important skills students gain through a Wikipedia assignment below!