SCIT Wiki a year in the Wiki wilderness “A presentation of findings from the SCIT Wiki project” Matthew Green School of Computing and IT University of Wolverhampton [email protected] definitions What is a wiki? a collaborative online document any users can add content any users can edit content any users can delete content inspirations Prensky, M (2007) – “How to teach with technology: keeping both teachers and students comfortable in an era of exponential change” “Some… (teachers) …have mastered on their own the technologies they use, but the smartest among them have partnered with their students, who are eager to teach them.” Bryant, L (2007) – “Emerging trends in social software for education” “In an educational context, wikis have an extremely practical role to play in allowing students and teachers to quickly and easily explore an area of knowledge…” SOURCES: Emerging Technologies for Learning, Volumes 1 and 2 http://publications.becta.org.uk/ William Glasser “We Learn 10% of what we read, 20% of what we hear, 30% of what we see, 50% of what we see and hear, 70% of what we discuss, 80% of what we experience, and 95% of what we teach others.” the project initial motivation A practical solution to an administrative problem “the trouble with a workbook is...” evolved motivation “does this engage the unmotivated?” “will students help one another to learn?” 2 semesters – 2 modules Web Development – familiarity with concepts the framework MediaWiki? the framework MediaWiki the tool of the “native” instant recognition little/no training required standards & open source maintained through community frequent updates and fixes functionality RSS/watchlist/auditing/formatting/history/versioning/user management/and so on.. thoughts on getting started “seeding” vs “nurturing” to seed to create a very simple start and allow students to create the first “branches” to nurture more mature content to be “pruned”, “weeded”, extended... my initial hopes interaction contribution engaging enlightenment? my fears unused lack of interest preference for the tangible vandalism undesirable adds/edits/deletes criticism a wiki can be used as a “soapbox” safeguards registration validated university accounts must be registered to view must be registered to edit challenges in forced registration lack of anonymity accountability vs. big brother findings (October 2006 -> March 2007) interaction above expectations helped by directed sessions corrections to content fast and numerous 11,500 hits 15 error corrections in 2 weeks contributions higher quality than expected, numerous 400 separate contributions currently 83 pages 10 new pages (12%) created by students in one academic year problems minor location/relocation of contributions format/presentation of contributions off-topic – basic/advanced copyright – copy & paste other staff users used more “seeds” than “seedlings” not as positive an experience from module evaluation “the best thing about the module is the wiki” “I've enjoyed learning from the wiki” “I've enjoyed contributing to the wiki” these are not isolated responses! where next WOLF 2.0 – October 2008 (pilots in 2007/8) wiki functionality built-in advantages no setup, no framework selection, integration, user account management, similar functionality to MediaWiki framework, familiarity of WOLF environment my humble recommendations content maturity balance students will contribute, if… contribution has value value is to individual and group the experience is self-rewarding students will not contribute, if the wiki is… an undefined gathering of facts/research intellectual puzzles or challenges more recommendations administration "the gardener" not to be underestimated not a passive role facilitator/contributor not observer my conclusions students want to help each other learn their motivations for doing so are diverse the quantity and quality of student contribution should not be underestimated students prefer to learn through their preferred communication channels, not ours follow-on projects… pebblewiki Linsey Duncan-Pitt a support facility for pebblepad users currently 46 pages in about 5 weeks follow-on projects… pebblewiki Linsey Duncan-Pitt a support facility for pebblepad users currently 46 pages in about 5 weeks more Web 2.0 projects and you?