Last modified on January 30, 2014, at 20:20

Action research as a congruent methodology for understanding wikis: the case of Wikiversity

Publication (help)
Action research as a congruent methodology for understanding wikis: the case of Wikiversity
Authors: Cormac Lawler [edit item]
Citation: Journal of Interactive Media in Education  : . 2008 May.
Publication type: Journal article
Peer-reviewed: Yes
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Link(s): Paper link
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Action research as a congruent methodology for understanding wikis: the case of Wikiversity is a publication by Cormac Lawler.


[edit] Abstract

It is proposed that action research is an appropriate methodology for studying wikis, and is akin to research ‘the wiki way’. This proposal is contextualised within the case of Wikiversity, a project of the Wikimedia Foundation. A framework for a participative research project is outlined, and challenges and implications of such a methodology are discussed.

[edit] Research questions

"This proposal is contextualised within the case of Wikiversity, a project of the Wikimedia Foundation. A framework for a participative research project is outlined, and challenges and implications of such a methodology are discussed."

Research details

Topics: Research platform [edit item]
Domains: Education [edit item]
Theory type: Design and action [edit item]
Wikipedia coverage: Case [edit item]
Theories: "Applied to an educational context, McPherson and Nunes have developed a useful action research model, encompassing the organisational context, pedagogic model, educational setting, and evaluation process (McPherson, Nunes, 2004: 27-29). It is also worthwhile to reflect on the fact that the research I am describing takes place within an online context – which are often quite amorphous and flexible in their boundaries (Foth, 2006; Barab et al., 2004). Given the previously discussed range of involvement around this research context, action research can serve to incorporate this diversity within each component of the framework proposed by McPherson and Nunes, and to use the framework to shed

light on different aspects and modes of participation." [edit item]

Research design: Action research [edit item]
Data source: Websites [edit item]
Collected data time dimension: Longitudinal [edit item]
Unit of analysis: Website [edit item]
Wikipedia data extraction: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia page type: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia language: Not specified [edit item]

[edit] Conclusion

"Wikis and action research are congruent, both epistemologically and methodologically, to the extent that action research is akin to ‘research, the wiki way’. Wikis fit perfectly into the ‘participatory paradigm’ called for by Reason and Bradbury (2006), and build and expand on the significant, perhaps paradigmatic, changes that ICTs have brought to education (Harasim, 2000).

I see the transparency of wikis as offering a significant educational potential – in affording a detailed view of how a page has developed through time, who has contributed to it, and what this can tell us about the construction of knowledge and, indeed, how this can be used to show how knowledge is constructed."

[edit] Comments

"Even though wikis show transparency as offering significant educational potential, more research need to be done in understanding the ways in which these open, participatory wiki environments really work for learning; how they address the needs of a wide range of people, and how they can be developed with these people in mind.

This paper is about Wikiversity, not Wikipedia."


Further notes[edit]