Wiki Presentation MSU - englishlanguagecenter

The Wonderful World
of Wikis
Created by Mary Wendt
Edited by Leah Stahl
Why I Went With Wikis
MSU uses ANGEL as their Course Management
Software (CMS)
Other systems include Blackboard, WebCT, and
These range from very user friendly to ugly, messy,
and cumbersome, with little user control over
I find ANGEL cumbersome and confusing.
For example, this is a Moodle page BEFORE I have
added anything. Imagine the clutter after I have
posted several things! (ANGEL looks a little more
organized—but not much.)
It’s Not All Bad…
Although ANGEL has some
advantages, like privacy for
submitting work, the complicated
process of adding and editing
content is irritating. I often struggled
to do the simplest things using ANGEL.
In short, it did not save me time.
So I Went With Wikis
I know of three free wiki providers
I use wikispaces, although the others
are perfectly fine.
So Exactly What is a Wiki?
This little video
gives a brief (and
very simplified)
overview of the
wiki concept
What Have I Used Wikis For?
 Course management
 Communicating with students
 Collaboration
 Student journals
 Storing course documents
and more…
The wiki homepage is where I put all
homework for the following class period and
any announcements. This eliminates those
annoying emails about homework from the
kids who missed class.
Easy to Navigate
You create a
navigation bar to
all the pages in
your wiki—and only
the pages you want,
nothing you don’t
I make a page for all my handouts
and readings. If students lose
documents, they can access them
on the wiki. You can upload them as
pdf files or as Word documents, or…
You can make a page for the document, as
I do for the syllabus.
(this is a pbwiki page—thought I’d show you
Student Pages
I have each student make their own
page, where they can post their picture.
It is their space. They’re great for
journaling, uploading documents, sharing
ideas, commenting on one another’s
journals, and collaborating.
For example…
Here, a student did an analysis of a blog.
Using his wiki page, he could link to the
blog and discuss it—this made it easy to
grade because I had the link right there
with the student’s analysis.
You can have students collaborate on
projects by creating group pages on the
wiki where they can post information and
links, and communicate with each other.
I can post the class schedule for
them to check at any time, with
hyperlinks to relevant documents on
the handouts page for what is due
Like blogging or forums, students can
discuss issues using the DISCUSS tab on
every page. Notice the numbers:
142 postings
Students are
like crazy (25
students in the
Managing the Wiki
Managing the wiki is easy using the
MANAGE WIKI link, you can:
 manage contents
 go back to previous versions
 change looks
 invite members
Big Brother
When students collaborate, you
always know who has contributed
and what they contributed by
using the HISTORY feature for
each page. This invisible part of
print-based writing becomes
visible. You can even tell what
time they did their work.
The HISTORY tab gives
you the date of an
addition, who made
the change, and
allows you to
compare two
versions and revert
back to a previous version of a page if
the newer page is not what you want.
Overall Satisfaction
Overall I have been very happy
using wikis. They have met all my
CMS needs and more. They don’t
vanish after the semester is over.
They can be accessed anywhere
without passwords. They are great
back-up for your files. The wiki is our