Learning in and with an open wiki project: Wikiversity's potential in global capacity building

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Learning in and with an open wiki project: Wikiversity's potential in global capacity building
Authors: Teemu Leinonen, Tere Vadén, Juha Suoranta [edit item]
Citation: First Monday 14 (2): 11. 2009 February.
Publication type: Journal article
Peer-reviewed: Yes
DOI: Define doi.
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Link(s): Paper link
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Learning in and with an open wiki project: Wikiversity's potential in global capacity building is a publication by Teemu Leinonen, Tere Vadén, Juha Suoranta.

[edit] Abstract

There is a chance that Wikiversity will become the Internet's free university just as Wikipedia is the free encyclopedia on the Internet. The building of an educational entity demands considering a number of philosophical and practical questions such as pedagogy and organization. In this paper we will address some of these, starting by introducing several earlier approaches and ideas related to wikis' potential for education. We continue by presenting three commonly used metaphors of learning: acquisition, participation and knowledge creation. Then we will present the main principles of two existing alternative educational approaches: free {aduH} education and free school movement. To test these educational approaches and practices on Wikiversity and increase our understanding of the possibilities of this initiative, in the spring of 2008 we implemented an experimental course in Wikiversity. We conclude with several recommendations essentially advocating for Wikiversity and the use of wikis in education. However, more than just presenting our opinions, as authors we aim to make an educated - traditionally and in the wiki way - contribution to the international discussion about the future of education for all in the digital era.

[edit] Research questions

"In this paper, we first present several different approaches to evaluate the potential of wikis for education. Then we will introduce three metaphors of learning that are common in the West. These are: acquisition, participation and knowledge creation (Paavola, et al., 2004)."

Research details

Topics: Miscellaneous topics [edit item]
Domains: Education [edit item]
Theory type: Design and action [edit item]
Wikipedia coverage: Case [edit item]
Theories: "For instance Raymond Williams, a British cultural theorist and adult educator, emphasized that education belongs to everyone: “that it is, before everything else, the process of giving to the ordinary members of society its full common meanings, in the light of their personal and common experience.”" [edit item]
Research design: Action research [edit item]
Data source: Experiment responses [edit item]
Collected data time dimension: N/A [edit item]
Unit of analysis: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia data extraction: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia page type: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia language: Not specified [edit item]

[edit] Conclusion

"People first. Probably the main difference between free and liberal education and open–wiki projects relates to focus. In classical free and liberal education, people are the center of educational efforts. The aim of the community is to have an impact on the lives of individuals. In a “classical” open–wiki project the focus is on the wiki site. The aim is to build wiki pages.

Classes. Putting members of the Wikiversity community in a central role provides an opportunity to develop new options. To increase the accessibility of Wikiversity, a new option could be organize study projects or classes. Social interventions. The Wikiversity community should actively recognize groups that would most benefit from further developments in the diversity of offerings in Wikiversity. Communication tools. Wikiversity needs to diversify its suite of options for communication. Integration of free/libre VoIP online conference tools would open Wikiversity to group work, assisting a larger number of individuals in creating additional content and offerings online.

Transparency of authorship. In the case of Wikipedia the idea of developing content without visible attrbibution as a collaboratively edited system makes sense. In the case of Wikiversity this does not make sense. With classes it will be more important for participants to literally know other participants and their instructors.

Freedom of point of view, non–verifiability and original research. Crucial Wikipedia policies — neutral point of view, verifiability and non–original research — should not tie Wikiversity. In a class participants should be free to take whatever point of view and use whatever sources they need. Participants should be encouraged to use unconventional forms of communication and representations of knowledge including music, dance, paintings, and poetry. The community as a whole, however, should hold final word on the value and virtue of different sub–communities working in Wikiversity."

[edit] Comments

Further notes[edit]