Education/Newsletter/June 2014/Single

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Headlines  · Highlights  · Single page edition


Wikipedia Education Project in Uruguay

Wikipedia in Education Project Annual Meeting in Maldonado,Uruguay, 2014

By Roxana Sordo (Proyecto Wikipedia en la Educación)

In Uruguay, the Wikipedia in Education Project (Proyecto Wikipedia en la Educación) is being led by Professor Fernando da Rosa and a team of four professors in Uruguay, who are members of Wikimedia Uruguay.

Consejo de Formación en Educación signed an agreement that Wikipedia editing would become a standard part of the curriculum for new teacher training. The project started in 2012. We gave presentations and workshops on Wikipedia editing in different teaching institutions all over the country and used an official website to communicate at Eduwiki.me. The main objective of the project is to generate a sense of technological ownership in teachers-to-be and professors by using Wikipedia in the teaching and learning processes.

The specific goals of the project include:

  • to engage teaching professors in reflective processes about the educational use of Wikipedia according to their possibilities
  • to create a small team of professors to work on theoretical, methodological and technical knowledge in order to develop digital competences related to Wikipedia
  • to promote critical reading, collaborative work and the use of Wikipedia in the teaching and learning processes.

As a result of the project, over one hundred good-quality articles on education, lesson plans, academic knowledge, local culture and current affairs have been created by students and professors at CFE (Consejo de Formación en Educación), ANEP, Uruguay with the help of Plan Ceibal, a national organization which is based on the OLPC Program. Moreover, there have been annual national meetings with regional guests in order to share knowledge, teaching and learning experiences on Wikipedia.

Some of the Wikipedia articles created in Spanish in the project include:

Some Wikipedia articles in English created in the project include:

A teacher-to-be using an xo computer from Plan Ceibal in Uruguay

Even though the workshops were optional, more than 1,200 people took part in them, 70% students and 30% professors. Half of the participants are active Wikipedia users today and have categorized themselves as wikipedians from Uruguay.

Indeed, Wikipedia is one of the most popular web 2.0 tools in Uruguay and around the world. It appears as one of the first search results in web search engines. As a matter of fact, people frequently use Wikipedia to get informed, especially our students, by means of their cell phones, tablets, laptops, and personal computers.

When it comes to teaching linguistic and digital competences, some burning questions may come up. What teaching strategies are we actually using under these circumstances? How can we integrate new technologies with language teaching? How can we teach digital citizenship, especially digital literacy and digital responsibility?

What are students reading Wikipedia articles for?

Students read for different purposes: to be informed, to prepare a lesson, to study for a test or an exam, to research a topic, to look for information sources, to do an activity or a piece of homework and for pleasure. Knowing the reading purpose is crucial for students and teachers to know the most adequate reading strategies to use. When students do not know what they are reading for, in general, they feel clueless and they lack motivation. Teachers should take the reading purpose into account and help students identify it, so that they can approach a text and do reading activities adequately.

Professor Roxana Sordo teaching a student how to edit a Wikipedia article

What writing strategies can we teach students by using Wikipedia?

Before students start writing, teachers can teach them how to plan the content and form of their texts, taking into consideration the audience they address, use graphic organizers in order to expand ideas, use background knowledge about a topic to look for information, read writing models, see similar Wikipedia articles, focus on spelling, writing codes and learn how to use punctuation. While students are writing, we can teach them how to monitor their work, apply learning styles, use lexical chunks and avoid excess use of a dictionary. Once students have written a Wikipedia article, we can teach them how to share their work so that others can read it and provide them with immediate feedback, check cohesion, spelling and cohesion, look for similarities and differences among information sources, categorizing articles, evaluating and discussing their work.

Some testimonials from students and professors on the project

"I reckon the work it takes to create a Wikipedia article has contributed to my knowledge about this software. Besides, it makes me wonder about the learning process, specifically in reference to knowledge production about a certain topic. I´m thinking about the possibility of creating an article that is going to be watched and edited by more experienced users. This is not a minor point since help is always welcome when learning."

—Loredana Parrillo, Teacher-to-be in Maldonado, Uruguay, User:Lore014

"In my opinion, Wikipedia is an internet asset to democracy. As I see it, it is a relevant tool because it contributes to a global culture and makes meaningful social practices possible, in general. It is about collaborative work, which is a great teaching practice. I created a Wikipedia article on Arrozal 33, a small town in Treinta y Tres, which is part of the historical heritage here and it was not part of this encyclopedia. I think my participation in Wikipedia was important and that is the essence of Wikipedia: to participate and collaborate to keep on creating and contributing”."

—Ignacio Senosiaín, Teacher-to-be in Treinta y Tres, Uruguay, User:Nachosenosiain

Additional documentation

See the entire article at: www.eduwiki.me

Sanothimi Campus celebrates 12 years of Nepali Wikipedia

College students learn about Wikipedia at Sanothimi Campus in Bhaktapur, Nepal
Nepali Wikipedia's 12th anniversary cake party

By Prakash Neupane (Wikimedia Nepal)

In honor of the 12th anniversary of Nepali Wikipedia, Wimkedia Nepal held a one-day Wikipedia Education Programme at Sanothimi Campus in Bhaktapur, Nepal. 100 participants were there for celebration and 80 Nepali college students got familiar with Wikipedia, which has good potential for Wikipedia Education Program.

This year, Nepali Wikipedia entered into it's teenage, and celebrated it's 12th anniversary as a national event at Sanothimi Campus on the 3rd of June 2014.

A whole day programme was organized in Sanothimi Campus to mark the special day. Wikipedia began in Nepal in 3rd June, 2002 with Nepali Wikipedia.

In the past 12 years, more than 25,000 articles are created in only nepali wikipedia, more than 16 thousand users are registered among them 125 are active every month. Nepali Wikipedia has 12 sysops and 4 bureaucrats.

On this occasion, a 3-hour editation was conducted for two different groups of people. Each group had approximately 40 participants and were categorised by Bachelor and Master level students. Before this, a short session on Wiki School was conducted, where students briefed about wikipedia, wikimedia and wikipedia education program. This group is good scope for Wikipedia Education Program, and so We are creating the environment for it.

The editathon was followed by Wiki Vichar. Wiki Vichar is about bringing thoughts and opinion about Wikipedia from different people. We know different people have different contemplations about Wikipedia, so in Wiki Vichar, we bring these views to floor — especially how teachers feel, how students feel and how college administration feels. Many different speakers shared their views on Wikipedia.

Mr. Ganesh Poudel, President of Wikimedia Nepal, presented the program report of the last year. And finally our guest, Ms. Sulochana Manandhar Dhital, Academician at the Nepal Academy and Advisor of the Nepali Wikipedia Community, inaugurated the cake party by cutting the cake.

Wikipedia Primary School Project

Wikipedia Primary School aims to bridge Wikipedia and primary education

By Erica Litrenta (SUPSI)

The Wikipedia Primary School project is an endeavor which seeks to understand whether or not Wikipedia articles meet the needs of primary school education.

This research aims to define and select relevant articles which address primary school curriculum, to facilitate the production of high quality new content which will be compatible with Wikipedia, and to assess existing articles linked to primary education, with a focus on Africa. The project will involve the Wikipedia community, partners, volunteers, scholars and experts in the field of education.

While numerous research projects have looked at Wikipedia contents and have consulted the Wikipedia community, this research utilizes methodology that involves a number of external people and entities.

The research is being conducted by two teams of researchers: one from SUPSI in Switzerland and one from the University of Cape Town. The programme partners are the Africa Centre and Wikimedia Switzerland (WMCH).

Various school systems were evaluated to understand how they work and to determine the differences between them, with the idea that what children study in African countries can be different than what children study in European countries. The point is understanding the main topics which primary schools teach in the countries that were observed.

The research team seeks to find out if content on Wikipedia answers questions that children, parents, and teachers ask in context of primary school learning. For example, Wikipedia has articles about continents and countries, but do those articles adequately cover climate, geography, biology, history such that there is sufficient information to support students in their studies?

The teams will compile a list of articles, both existing articles as well as articles that have not yet been created. Academic journals will peer review existing articles or issue calls for papers for experts to write articles in their fields and release them under a free license so that the information can later be made available for use on Wikipedia. The results of the peer review will be published in the project journal which will be linked to on the assessed articles' talk pages. The teams will not be publishing any information directly on Wikipedia, but they will notify the community of their availability, should they wish to refer to them. Documentation is available on Meta.

Israeli Ministry of Education and Wikipedia collaboration: teachers and students will be trained to write Wikipedia articles

From left to right: Itzik Edri, Chair of Wikimedia Israel Board; Michal Lester, Executive Director of Wikimedia Israel; Jan-Bart de Vreede, Chair of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees; Rabbi Shai Piron, Israel's Education Minister

By Itzik Edri (Wikimedia Israel) and Ido Ivri (National Library of Israel and Wikimedia Israel)

In Israel, an agreement was reached between the Ministry of Education, Wikimedia Israel, and the Wikimedia Foundation that will change the national educational curricula: teachers and students will learn how to contribute to new or incomplete Wikipedia articles about academic topics for which information is lacking or inadequate, including history, geography, and science.

The incorporation of reading and writing Wikipedia articles as part of Israel’s “Meaningful Learning” program (here, in Hebrew), is aimed at equipping students with knowledge and skills relevant to the 21st century.

The Education Ministry will also look at possibly including Wikipedia writing assignments for research and community service assignments. They will also explore having students who speak additional languages (mainly English and Russian) write Wikipedia articles about Israel in those languages.

Several pilot projects are already underway. Teachers are being trained in the mechanics of working on Wikipedia as well as article composition. Gifted high school students are learning Wikipedia article writing. And elementary schoolchildren are bring taught proper Wikipedia usage.

Hundreds of articles are written each year by students in courses at universities and colleges throughout Israel. Students sometimes even write Wikipedia articles instead of exams or final papers. The Faculty of Medicine at Tel Aviv University recently conducted a special 2-credit course about Wikipedia and medicine.

Education Minister Rabbi Shai Piron said, “It is important to us that the education system in Israel leads in innovation and cooperating with Wikipedia is a wonderful opportunity to think outside the box and enable students in Israel to do things that make a difference from which others can also benefit.”

Jan-Bart de Vreede, Chair of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees said, “Israel is today among the leading countries in the integration of Wikipedia in the education system and academia. I hope our joint work model will also serve as an example to other education systems around the world.”

This resolution represents a very significant step for Wikimedia Israel. Developing a National Plan for hundreds of teachers and thousands of students is a complicated undertaking, facing issues such as scale, article quality and coordination with the community. WMIL are hopeful that the decisions will lead to a start of a large scale collaboration, but the hard work is still ahead.

Wikimedia Serbia teacher education course accredited by the Republic of Serbia

Wikimedia Serbia logo

By Mile Kiš (Wikimedia Serbia), Filip Maljković (Wikimedia Serbia), & Ivana Madžarević (Wikimedia Serbia)

After the Serbian Ministry of Education prescribed that as of September 2014 all students in the second year of secondary school curriculum must study wiki tools, the Institute for the Improvement of Knowledge and Education has included a course on Wikipedia in its catalog of accredited programs for continuous professional development of teachers, professors and other school personnel. This accreditation lasts for two years and this course will start in December.

Filip Maljković, Wikimedia Serbia's Board President, explains: "We have officially been 'accredited' to hold seminars for teachers and professors regarding wiki tools. Those seminars are mandatory for employees of educational institutions and they can choose several of them throughout the school year in order to make their quota. We can organize several of those seminars, depending on the interest of potential participants, but we are required to make at least two per year. If there's a need, we will organize several of those seminars per year, depending on our availability, of course."

Since 2013, the Serbian Institute for the Advancement of Knowledge and Education, (which among other things deals with technical assistance in the preparation of programs of education at primary, secondary and vocational schools) decided that students, through a number of hours at the Computer Science, should study Wiki tools. This step of the Institute and the Ministry was crucial in the following efforts of the EduWiki project of Wikimedia Serbia, which increasingly involved not only the students but the teaching staff in the project.

Since October 2013, preparations were made for a special course dedicated to teaching and senior level staff in primary and secondary schools and high schools. As per the regulations of the Republic of Serbia, there are officially accredited courses for teachers within the catalog of continuous professional development within the jurisdiction of the Institute, it was necessary to invest a lot of effort in getting the accreditation.

Numerous meetings, discussions and consultations with several partners, has led to the creation of the course “Usage of Wikipedia in teaching and learning”. It took eight months of waiting and several levels of evaluation in order to receive accreditation course. Starting in September, and over the next two years, teachers, staff and school administrators will have the opportunity to attend these courses. According to the catalog criteria, the course carries 8 points and takes the same number of hours. It is designed for all categories but its priority area is ​​strengthening the professional capacity of staff, particularly in the area of ​​innovative teaching approach and methods.

Wikimedia Serbia and the Academic Board of the Wikimedia Serbia is working hard on the preparation of teaching for its first participants. More than a dozen brochures and leaflets are being translated and adapted as well as concepts for teaching. Also Wikimedia Serbia is working on the promotion and presentation to the general public. Look for more info to come!

Geneva education department produces two films on Wikipedia editing by students

Student editing a Wikipedia article during class.

By Gabriel Thullen (Wikimedia Switzerland)

The Geneva (Switzerland) education department produced two short films on editing Wikipedia articles by students. These are part of a series of films being produced to illustrate innovative ways of using digital technologies in school. These films are in French, and can be seen on the official website: http://edu.ge.ch/ecolenumerique/videos.

The first film shows the editing process from a student's point of view, with a few student interviews. It shows how an article is edited or created in class, from start to finish. The film also talks about finding reliable information on the web, about how the encyclopedia works and how each one of us can help keep this important tool free by adding a little bit of free information. Students can now become actors of the information age, and not mere digital consumers.

The second film is an interview of the teacher in charge of the project. He explains how this Wikipedia editing project allows his students to work on many different computer science skills : word processing, basic editing functions like copy & paste, spell checking, researching information on the web, wiki editing and so on. This is a powerful argument for teachers who need to justify the time spent on Wikipedia editing: this activity enables students to master a large variety of skills that go beyond just reading and writing on the computer. This project is also an example of horizontal pedagogy, both where the teachers can learn from their students, and where there is an active exchange between different subject matters like language courses, geography, history, biology... The second films ends with a prediction that with the advent of Wikipedia, huge 20 volume printed encyclopedias are bound to disappear (no pun intended).

The school project is described on the French Wikipedia:

A second project has been started with high school students, also described on the French Wikipedia:

The remaining challenge is to get the film uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, and maybe have the soundtrack dubbed into different languages.

Busy 2014 for Education at Wikimedia UK, so far

Dr Greg Singh with Dr Padmini Ray Murray at What I Know Is

By Toni Sant (Wikimedia UK)

The first half of 2014 has been rather busy on the education front for Wikimedia UK. Since January, the UK chapter has organised and/or supported a wide variety of events. Here is an annotated list of all the Education-related events that have taken place until the end of May 2014:

These are the most recent events in a string of education outreach activities which will continue throughout 2014. My WMUK colleague Richard Nevell and I are in the process of collating basic information (mainly usernames and contact details, where appropriate) from all participants at these events to ensure appropriate follow-up and engagement through future education-related activities.

Aside from these various outreach events, at this time WMUK was also heavily involved in preparation for two major education-related events coming up very shortly; the Future of Education track at Wikimania, and the annual education conference EduWiki.

The Future of Education at Wikimania

Based in London ahead of Wikimania 2014, a The Future of Education workshop is to be held as a fringe event on 21-22 June. Attracting around 30 attendees, this two-day workshop will be held at The Barbican in London, and seeks to engage educators, education policy makers, instructional technologists, students, librarians (and anyone else) interested in the intersections between Wikimedia projects and education, in relation to the Future of Education track at the movement’s annual gathering.

EduWiki

Meanwhile, following on from the successful EduWiki events presented in 2012 (Leicester) and 2013 (Cardiff), plans are in progress for the Eduwiki Conference 2014, which will take place at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland on Friday 31 October. This event looks to raise awareness of the educational possibilities of Wikipedia and sister projects, and developing Wikimedia UK's academic engagement. A survey about WMUK's education activities around EduWiki was circulated in May 2014 to attendees of the EduWiki conferences organised in previous years. It is envisioned that the responses from this survey will help enhance the programme for EduWiki 2014 and further engagement with the event attendees over the years.

Global engagement

WMUK was also very pleased to see the EduWiki name adopted by our colleagues at Wikimedia Serbia, who organised a conference under that name in March. Brian Kelly, a volunteer of the UK chapter, was able to attend the conference through a scholarship organised by WMUK, and commented on how the conference only attracted small numbers compared to what we’re used to in the UK, however it will also encourage us to consider other ways of interacting with the mainstream community, and the potential use of social media as a means of engagement. Brian has posted the following blog posts about this experience: preparation + report.

WMUK’s engagement on education matters within the global movement took an interesting turn in March when I attended the Education Cooperative meeting in Prague. At this meeting, the WMUK joined other Wikimedia education programs (including Israel, Nepal, Czech Republic, Mexico, Ukraine, United States, Canada, Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Serbia) and the Wikimedia Foundation’s Global Education Program team to determine a plan moving forward for sharing best practices and fostering collaboration among educational efforts on Wikipedia and other Wikimedia project. Members of this grouping are currently formulating two related presentations for Wikimania 2014.

Wikimedians in Residence

In closing, I’d like to also point out that in 2014 we have also been graced with three Wikimedians in Residence related to our education and outreach programmes here in the UK. Ally Crockford is the Wikipedian in Residence at the National Library of Scotland. Ally’s interests and disciplines vary, and while she has been recently been speaking about the value of GLAMWiki, she has also been doing considerable amounts of work in relation to Education, including the forthcoming EduWiki Conference 2014. Martin Poulter has recently finished his post as Jisc Ambassador, which focused on encouraging projects across various sectors relating to engaging educators with Wikimedia. And Coleg Cymraeg in Wales became the second university worldwide to employ a Wikimedia in Residence: Marc Haynes. He will be there for an initial period of six months, which may be extended further depending on how things go.

Getting ready for WikiCamp 2014 Armenia

Wiki Camp 2014 Vanadzor
Workshop for Yeghvard high school students

By Lilit Tarkhanyan (Wikimedia Armenia)

Wikimedia Armenia is organizing a Wiki Youth Camp this summer in one of the most beautiful sites of Armenia, Vanadzor, with the support of the Wikimedia Foundation (6-20 July and 12-26 August 2014).

The Camp will bring together 100 active Wikimedia contributors between the ages of 14 and 20 who will be selected on the basis of volume and quantity of their contributions in Armenian Wikipedia. These editors will receive free passes to participate in the camping event. All the participants will spend 4 hours a day writing articles devoted to Armenia and Armenians in Eastern Armenian, Western Armenian or other languages for 14 consecutive days.

The WikiCamp application deadline is 20 June 2014. After which, the organization team will select those participants who best fit the WikiCamp requirements.

During their two-week stay, the participants of the camping event will master the tools of wiki editing and will write articles with the help of active Wikipedia editors. To facilitate the activities of the campers and make them more effective, digitized versions of literature in Eastern Armenian and Western Armenian will be posted on Armenian Wikisource. There will also be printed versions of literature, which may serve as a source for the articles to be written. The daily activities include Armenian song and dance lessons, screenings of Armenian films and meetings with renowned academics, writers and cultural figures.

News from Tec de Monterrey, Mexico City Campus

Students working with Wikipedia for community service, summer 2014

By Leigh Thelmadatter (Wiki Borregos)

The past month has been busy at Tec de Monterrey. A new group of students doing their community service hours have been trained and have begun to do projects. Unlike last semester, when almost all the students opted for translation and photography projects, there are already three accepted projects to write new articles in Spanish Wikipedia. Most of the students are from the economics and finance majors, but there are also several in music engineering and digital animation. The first digital animation project, a demonstration of how a rook moves in chess, has been added to Commons and can be seen here. One change from last semester was more formal training sessions, two days, five hours each, culminating in doing a short translation from en.wiki to es.wiki. Most of the community service hours will be completed by the creation and completion of larger tasks/projects such as creating article, images and illustrations, but there are also four F2F sessions for the group to work on smaller, but equally important tasks such as reviewing each others' articles, sorting and improving descriptions in Commons and updating infoboxes in articles on Mexican municipalities.

Global Studies professors and librarians at Wikipedia workshop on June 6

Working with Wikipedia is growing the campus and beyond, with its inclusion in academic work now labeled as "Wiki Learning" for the Tec de Monterrey campus system. (See “Wiki Learning” to be adopted at Mexico’s Tec de Monterrey ). On May 26th, Dr. Lourdes Epstein and Leigh Thelmadatter presented at the Monterrey campus as part of the VIII Congress on Educational Research, Innovation and Management (VIII Congreso de Investigación, Innovación y Gestión Educativas). The presentation was a brief general review of Wikipedia work on the Mexico City Campus along with observation and survey results from the first full complement of students working with Wikipedia to fulfill community service hours required of undergraduate in Mexican universities.

This was followed on June 6 by special training session offered to the Global Studies Department of the Mexico City Campus in order to encourage professors to plan and pilot Wikipedia/Wikimedia based projects for the upcoming fall semester. This session lasted for four hours and was attended by eight professors and one librarian from the neighboring Santa Fe campus. On June 12, Lourdes, Paola and Leigh gave their first report on the progress of Wiki Learning to a major meeting of innovation projects held at the Tec de Monterrey, Puebla Campus.

Wikimedia Deutschland: Summary of activities in May 2014

Our interactive exhibit onboard the MS Science
OER-Sprint at Wikimedia Deutschland on 5 May 2014

By Christopher Schwarzkopf (Wikimedia Deutschland)

Volunteer Support
The project women edit is getting more and more established as a monthly meeting opportunity for female editors. On 7 May ten women met up in the Wikimedia Deutschland office in Berlin to edit in both the German and the Englisch Wikipedia together. Moreover, on 31 May a ““women in science”- edit-a-thon took place as the first pilot project within “women edit”. The event was organized by three female Wikipedia-authors. They are part of the recently established WikiWomen-Network that supports women in their first steps in Wikipedia both online and offline. The Network is also currently preparing a workshop that will take place in June in Dortmund. Questions related to the project will be answered by Silvia Stieneker.


The project Wiki Dialog (“Wiki Dialogue”) has started successfully. User Plani suggested a temporary dialogue on the subject of “quality in Wikipedia” and more than 25 Wikipedians are dealing with this topic. Background: Wiki Dialogue is a series of online meetups where the participants exchange ideas about various topics related to the Wikipedia and its sister-projects in order to share their findings and skills. The meetings are based on the concept of cMOOCs and have a workshop character. For more information about the project contact Julia Kloppenburg or Dirk Franke.


Institutional partnerships
The Science Year 2014 - “Digital Society” is in full play! The exhibition ship MS Wissenschaft (“MS Science”) is currently on its tour through Germany and Austria. Onboard: Our interactive exhibit “The Wikipedia principle -free data, free knowledge” that we developed in cooperation with the Open Knowledge Foundation. On 30 May the ship stopped in Bremen where we held a public event with board member Jürgen Friedrich, who spoke about Wikipedia and science. As another activity in the context of our participation in the science year we officially announced the start of our project “Digitale Kompetenzen” (“digital competencies”), a series of five events that focus on the different skills that are important in the digital society. The first event will focus on the subject of data security awareness and will take place on 23 June in the Wikimedia Deutschland office. The project is co-funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. For more information about the project contact Valentin Münscher.


Legal and social framework
As already mentioned we we were able to win the German Federal Agency for Civic Education as a partner and co-funder for the Open Educational Conference 2014 (12. & 13. September in Berlin). In May we started the call for participation that will end on 17 June. In the run-up to the re:publica, Germany’s largest conferences on social media, blogs and digital society, we held an OER-Sprint in our office where about twelve volunteers collaboratively created Open Educational Resources on the subject of digital society. At the re:publica, Wikimedia Deutschland staff member Sebastian Horndasch held a Lightning Talk about OER and officially announced the Open Educational Conference 2014

Czech senior citizen program supported by a WMF grant

Professor Jan Sokol, himself an active "senior citizen", has played an active role in the beginnings of the Senior citizen education program

By Vojtěch Dostál (WMCZ)

A new program of Wikimedia Czech Republic, Senioři píší Wikipedii (Senior Citizens Write Wikipedia) has received substantial financial support from the Individual Engagement Grant program (IEG) of the Wikimedia Foundation. The project was inspired by another successful Czech program Studenti píší Wikipedii (Students Write Wikipedia) as well as by senior citizen programs in other countries (Germany). The program was first outlined by Professor Jan Sokol, Czech philosopher and Wikipedian, at the Czech WikiConference in 2013 (see the lecture here). In spring 2014, Vojtěch Veselý from Wikimedia Czech Republic started to tie bonds with key institutions and planned a complex program that would reach PC-aware senior citizens in several ways. In fact, the project proved so complex that it needed its own independent grant, which would cover not only the basic expenditures (rent, printouts) but also the time of the manager, Vojtěch Veselý. The grant proposal has recently been approved and we are looking forward to first results of the program!

Editor's note: This program has been covered in Czech and English media. (See: Articles of interest in other publications).

Wikimedia Sverige: Classrooms and ambassadors

Wikipedia for immigrants.

By Sara Mörtsell (Wikimedia Sverige)

Wikipedia ambassadors Paulina Bäckström and Caroline Gunnarsson shared their experience from working with Luganda Wikipedia on site in Uganda in this blogpost on the Wikimedia blog, where we learnt that it all started with being assigned to edit Wikipedia articles as part of their course work in high school.

The Wikiversity resource for educators and students in the Swedish for Immigrants program has now been presented at two national conferences in Sweden. The possibility of having students mentored by volunteers in their own language versions was highlighted by the educators as one of the key features of the resource. To further improve our outreach in this project, we now also have the brochure ready to ease the introduction and to give educators every chance to feel confident in trying Wikipedia with their adult learners of Swedish.

Wiki Education Foundation attends WikiConference USA

Wiki Education Foundation's LiAnna Davis presents at WikiConference USA

By Jami Mathewson (Wiki Education Foundation)

At the end of May, LiAnna Davis, Jami Mathewson, and Frank Schulenburg of the Wiki Education Foundation attended the first annual WikiConference USA in New York City. The conference served as a space for Wikimedians to collaborate about their work on programs around the country.

Education had a strong presence at the conference, and around 40 attendees have been involved in the Wikipedia Education Program at some point in the last 4 years. The Wiki Education Foundation participated in four talks as presenters and several more as audience members. Perhaps the most well received was LiAnna's The 7 Biggest Mistakes the Wikipedia Education Program’s Made – and What We Learned From Them, where she focused not on the mistakes themselves but on how we have moved forward and altered our program from them.

The Wiki Ed staff truly enjoyed the opportunity to engage with the education and Wikipedia communities about the future of Wikipedia and education!

Update on the education portal

Outreach wiki Education portal main page image

By Anna Koval (Wikimedia Foundation) and Sage Ross (Wiki Education Foundation)

The WMF education team in collaboration with the Education Coop, have been working hard on reforging the Education portal here on Outreach wiki. We’re now at a place where we think it’s in a much more workable (and prettier) state.

There is additional information about the re-organization of information on the Education portal's talk page.

To recap, this work began in January of this year with Sage Ross's consolidation of the contents of several other portals and wikis.

I will be picking up where Sage left off since he has left the Wikimedia Foundation and has joined the Wiki Education Foundation.

We tried to strike a balance between (1) arranging all of the information in the portal in a coherent way so that people can find exactly what they are looking for, and (2) making it easy for people to jump in and find the most relevant things for them, even if they don’t already know just what they are looking for.

The education portal is organized almost exclusively via a handful of navigation templates that are all based on Template:Navigation. It is relatively easy to reorganize the pages into different tabs and subtabs by changing these templates, without needing to move the pages themselves. I am happy to help with any further changes that are needed.

In terms of "What's Next?" well that's kind of up to all of us. :) Content development is crucial. There are number of pages that still say {{under construction}} or are completely blank. Reorganization is possible. If the current structure doesn't function well for us, we'll revisit and revise it. Let's consider this to be v.1.0 and go forward together from here. :)

We welcome feedback on the work done to date! You can leave comments, questions or suggestions at Talk:Education#Update on the education portal.

Articles of interest in other publications

Wikipedia pops up in bibliographies, and even college curricula[edit]

L.A. Times logo.

This article in the Los Angeles Times reviews the inroads that Wikipedia is making in academia, especially as a platform for student participation in content creation. It contains the experiences and quotes from students and professors as well as representatives of the Wiki Education Program (the U.S./Canada organization) as well as the Wikipedian-in-residence of the University of California, Berkeley, Kevin Gorman. Read the full article here


Israeli public schools integrate Wikipedia into their curriculum[edit]

Jan-Bart de Vreede, Chair of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees, and Rabbi Shai Piron, Israel's Education Minister


Czech Senior Citizens Write Wikipedia[edit]

WMCZ logo

The Czech Wikimedia Chapter is developing a pilot program to engage digitally-literate senior citizens in editing Czech Wikipedia. Their Individual Engagement Grant was funded by the WMF at 160,000 CZK. See details here: New grantees bring fresh perspectives on research, mobile, and community-building. Below are articles about the rising senior citizen program in the Czech Republica, all of them in Czech except for the first one:


“Wiki Learning” to be adopted at Mexico’s Tec de Monterrey[edit]

Wiki Learning leaders (L-R) Lourdes Epstein, Leigh Thelmadatter and Paola Ricaurte

Under the name of “Wiki Learning,” the Tec de Monterrey has adopted working with Wikipedia as part of its system-wide efforts in innovation in education. Previously limited mostly to the Global Studies department of the Mexico City campus, this acceptance will allow the idea to spread among the over 30 campuses and other sites related to the Tec. Coverage of this news can be found in the Wikimedia Blog as well as the Tec de Monterrey newsletter “Talento Tec”, The Tec de Monterrey system news portal and the Especialistas news service for media specialists.


Wikipedian editor and academic took on website’s gender gap[edit]

Wikipedian and academic Adrianne Wadewitz

Tracy Wholf of The PBS Newshour interviewed professor and Wikipedian Adrianne Wadewitz about Wikipedia's gender gap. This interview was recored just a few weeks before her tragic death in a rock climbing accident and was broadcast with the encouragement of her family. Listen to the interview and read the full transcript on the PBS website.


Sage Ross joins the Wiki Ed as Product Manager, Digital Services[edit]

Sage Ross joins the Wiki Education Foundation

Earlier this month, Sage Ross joined the Wiki Education Foundation as their Product Manager for Digital Services. Sage had previously worked at the Wikimedia Foundation with the Wikipedia Education Program team as an Online Communications contractor. He worked on the course page extension, the online training modules and the education portal on Outreach wiki. We wish Sage all the best going forward at Wiki Ed, but his colleagues at the WMF will really miss him. Read more in WEF's official announcement.

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