Who writes the past? Student perceptions of Wikipedia knowledge and credibility in a world history classroom

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Who writes the past? Student perceptions of Wikipedia knowledge and credibility in a world history classroom
Authors: Susanna Calkins, Matthew R. Kelley [edit item]
Citation: Journal on Excellence in College Teaching 20 : . 2009.
Publication type: Journal article
Peer-reviewed: Yes
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Google Scholar cites: Citations
Link(s): Paper link
Added by Wikilit team: Added on initial load
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Who writes the past? Student perceptions of Wikipedia knowledge and credibility in a world history classroom is a publication by Susanna Calkins, Matthew R. Kelley.


[edit] Abstract

The authors describe an inquiry-based learning project that required students in a first-year world history course to reflect on and analyze critically the nature of the knowledge found in Wikipedia--the free, open-content, rapidly evolving, internet encyclopedia. Using a rubric, the authors explored students' perceptions of the collaborative and community nature of Wikipedia as well as Wikipedia's accuracy, reputability, ease, and accessibility. Furthermore, they examined students' reflections on issues of plagiarism, responsibility, and whether Wikipedia qualifies as a scholarly source. Student perceptions were closely related to their level of intellectual and ethical development as defined by Perry (1970, 1998).

[edit] Research questions

"the authors explored students’ perceptions of the collaborative and community nature of Wikipedia as well as Wikipedia’s accuracy, reputability, ease, and accessibility. Furthermore, they examined students’ reflections on issues of plagiarism, responsibility, and whether Wikipedia qualifies as a scholarly source."

Research details

Topics: Reader perceptions of credibility, Domain-specific student readership, Student information literacy [edit item]
Domains: History, Rhetoric, Education [edit item]
Theory type: Analysis [edit item]
Wikipedia coverage: Main topic [edit item]
Theories: "Yet Perry’s model, revised in 1998, is still valuable as an analytic tool that allows us to connect the individual learner, course content, and process of understanding (Moore, 2002)" [edit item]
Research design: Action research [edit item]
Data source: Experiment responses [edit item]
Collected data time dimension: Cross-sectional [edit item]
Unit of analysis: User [edit item]
Wikipedia data extraction: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia page type: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia language: N/A [edit item]

[edit] Conclusion

"Students categorized as the most sophisticated thinkers in each class were willing to believe in the promise of Wikipedia despite its current limitations. For example, nearly every student pointed out that Wikipedia was subject to factual error. Yet many students commended the Wikipedia community for its ability to quickly root out such errors. Moreover, many students advocated the idea that, even if Wikipedia is not credible yet, it will become credible over time as more and more contributors revise, edit, and continually update the content. For many students, one of Wikipedia’s greatest strengths is that knowledge could come from the bottom up: One does not have to be an academic with traditional credentials to weigh in on a subject. This gave me pause, and made me rethink my own fixed stance about the online encyclopedia. One heartening result of this study was that most of the students seemed to come to understand that all texts are subject to interpretation and bias, whether written by a professor or layman, a scholar or a community of contributors. At the same time, students at the multiplicity level struck me as the most dangerous because of their seeming willingness to accept any and all points of view as equally accurate or credible. Still, I took some measure of solace in that they were not as rigid as students at the dualist level, who believed solely in the authority of experts without question."

[edit] Comments

"Students categorized as the most sophisticated thinkers in each class were willing to believe in the promise of Wikipedia despite its current limitations."


Further notes[edit]

Facts about "Who writes the past? Student perceptions of Wikipedia knowledge and credibility in a world history classroom"RDF feed
AbstractThe authors describe an inquiry-based learThe authors describe an inquiry-based learning project that required students in a first-year world history course to reflect on and analyze critically the nature of the knowledge found in Wikipedia--the free, open-content, rapidly evolving, internet encyclopedia. Using a rubric, the authors explored students' perceptions of the collaborative and community nature of Wikipedia as well as Wikipedia's accuracy, reputability, ease, and accessibility. Furthermore, they examined students' reflections on issues of plagiarism, responsibility, and whether Wikipedia qualifies as a scholarly source. Student perceptions were closely related to their level of intellectual and ethical development as defined by Perry (1970, 1998).elopment as defined by Perry (1970, 1998).
Added by wikilit teamAdded on initial load +
Collected data time dimensionCross-sectional +
CommentsStudents categorized as the most sophisticated thinkers in each class were willing to believe in the promise of Wikipedia despite its current limitations.
ConclusionStudents categorized as the most sophisticStudents categorized as the most sophisticated thinkers in each class were willing to believe in the promise of Wikipedia despite its current limitations. For example, nearly every student pointed out that Wikipedia was subject to factual error. Yet many students commended the Wikipedia community for its ability to quickly root out such errors. Moreover, many students advocated the idea that, even if Wikipedia is not credible yet, it will become credible over time as more and more contributors revise, edit, and continually update the content. For many students, one of Wikipedia’s greatest strengths is that knowledge could come from the bottom up: One does not have to be an academic with traditional credentials to weigh in on a subject. This gave me pause, and made me rethink my own fixed stance about the online encyclopedia.

One heartening result of this study was that most of the students seemed to come to understand that all texts are subject to interpretation and bias, whether written by a professor or layman, a scholar or a community of contributors. At the same time, students at the multiplicity level struck me as the most dangerous because of their seeming willingness to accept any and all points of view as equally accurate or credible. Still, I took some

measure of solace in that they were not as rigid as students at the dualist level, who believed solely in the authority of experts without question.
the authority of experts without question.
Data sourceExperiment responses +
Google scholar urlhttp://scholar.google.com/scholar?ie=UTF-8&q=%22Who%2Bwrites%2Bthe%2Bpast%3F%2BStudent%2Bperceptions%2Bof%2BWikipedia%2Bknowledge%2Band%2Bcredibility%2Bin%2Ba%2Bworld%2Bhistory%2Bclassroom%22 +
Has authorSusanna Calkins + and Matthew R. Kelley +
Has domainHistory +, Rhetoric + and Education +
Has topicReader perceptions of credibility +, Domain-specific student readership + and Student information literacy +
Peer reviewedYes +
Publication typeJournal article +
Published inJournal on Excellence in College Teaching +
Research designAction research +
Research questionsthe authors explored students’ perceptionsthe authors explored students’ perceptions of the collaborative and community nature of Wikipedia as well as Wikipedia’s accuracy, reputability, ease, and accessibility. Furthermore, they examined students’ reflections on issues of plagiarism, responsibility, and whether Wikipedia qualifies as a scholarly source.Wikipedia qualifies as a scholarly source.
Revid11,055 +
TheoriesYet Perry’s model, revised in 1998, is still valuable as an analytic tool that allows us to connect the individual learner, course content, and process of understanding (Moore, 2002)
Theory typeAnalysis +
TitleWho writes the past? Student perceptions of Wikipedia knowledge and credibility in a world history classroom
Unit of analysisUser +
Urlhttp://campus.lakeforest.edu/kelley/Calkins-Kelley-2009.pdf +
Volume20 +
Wikipedia coverageMain topic +
Wikipedia data extractionN/A +
Wikipedia languageN/A +
Wikipedia page typeN/A +
Year2009 +