The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

A friend, who's roaming the planet, updated her status on FB mentioning how good it was to have time to research all those things she'd always wondered about... using Wikipedia.

Almost immediately, another friend, who's a teacher, felt the need to warn her that all that knowledge she was gleefully absorbing was probably not trustworthy, because... you know... it's wikipedia... and stuff... ya know?

No?

Ok, in a run-on sentence: Wikipedia is an open-source information hub, which means the information is supplied by voluntary collaboration, which means it can be edited by anyone, at anytime, which makes most academic institutions uncomfortable about using it as a credible source.

Got it? That means educators (myself included) tell students they aren't allowed to cite wikipedia as a reference in their assignments.

However, we must deal with reality: Wikipedia is usually one of the first references to appear in a web search about almost anything (unless some SEO strategist has worked hard to get their website in above it). Wikipedia is comprehensive, concise, and full of links to related information.

In other words, it's very appealing to students, and no matter what you say, they will use it, at least as a starting point. Therefore, instead of fighting it, why not start project-based lessons that use it?

There are different projects for teachers in schools or universities, and educators who teach English , literature , writing, journalism or biology.

You might even want to create your own.

But, whatever you decide to do, or not do... don't knock it before you try it.

Views: 121

Comment

You need to be a member of The Educator's PLN to add comments!

Join The Educator's PLN

Comment by Mark Moran on June 19, 2010 at 12:55pm
If students have an informed view of what Wikipedia is and is not, and its limitations, they can use Wikipedia for a general overview of a subject, to find links that may warrant further review, and to find keywords to search. But as Wikipedia itself says, students should not cite Wikipedia, or entirely rely on it. You can't cite something if you don't know who wrote it, why they wrote it, and what their credentials are; a screen name doesn't suffice. We've created a Web Guide to Understanding Wikipedia and a cautionary Ten Reasons You Can't Cite Wikipedia, which lay bare the limitations of Wikipedia.
Comment by Thomas Whitby on June 16, 2010 at 8:33am
The misunderstandings of Wikipedia are based on False assumptions and educational snobbery. Wikipedia has been established to be as reliable as the Encyclopedia Britannica. Some people have yet to understand that. There is a need for educators to stay relevant and it will not happen holding on to old concepts and assumptions. Some teachers need to get out more and create a Professional Learning Network.

About

Thomas Whitby created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

Alice Thomas posted a blog post

Why is it so important to write a quality MBA essay?

Writing a persuasive and quality MBA essay is one of the essential stages in the MBA application process. It is an examination phrase where you have to include different information in your essay. This article will explain the importance of writing a quality MBA essay and provide insights into the explored topic. Suppose you require the right information about writing quality MBA essays and improve your general understanding. In that case, you are in the appropriate location because this…See More
Nov 20
Profile IconMaxBurton, Andrew Hickman, Ellis Leigh and 9 more joined The Educator's PLN
Nov 19
Jamie Costello posted a blog post

Top tips to increase your productivity through your study room

We’re stuck at home with limited access to many public spaces outdoors, including libraries, co-working spaces and educational institutions. These are just some examples of study areas you may utilise when you need a change in scenery to keep yourself engaged whilst you’re studying. Now, we’re being forced within the four walls of our home which means creating a workspace or room has never been more important. The learning environment that students work in can have a major impact on…See More
Nov 10
Profile IconWalter Holz, Sarah Kerttu, Gaby Eyzaguirre and 5 more joined The Educator's PLN
Nov 4
john smith updated their profile
Oct 30
Jamie Costello posted a blog post

3 Best Educational Apps for Student

When we think of mobile phones in the classroom, it tends to be a forbidden subject as teachers found them as a distraction against education. Parents and teachers would do anything to prevent the use of smartphones in the classroom.  Now we’re seeing a different outlook on the benefits of mobile phones in the classroom. In particular, mobile app development is shedding a light on how mobile phones can actually be the key to educational…See More
Sep 30
Agnes Mckenna updated their profile
Sep 29
Eleonore Cowan updated their profile
Sep 29

Events

© 2020   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service