We wanted to tell you about some changes to how Wiki Ed will be working
with ambassadors. As our organization has grown, the pace of our
understanding of best practices has accelerated. We’ve been developing new
tools and resources, too. It’s unfair to expect volunteers to keep up with
that pace. And no volunteer wants to deal with negative feedback from other
editors when a course has problems. So it’s no surprise that we’ve seen a
drop off in the level of engagement from our ambassadors. All these reasons
have factored in to a change we're making in the program.
Wiki Ed will be rolling out a new system for connecting volunteers and
courses this week. As part of this shift, the Wiki Education Foundation
will no longer affiliate individual volunteers as Wikipedia Ambassadors;
instead of a complicated application process with a time commitment
requirement, we want to make it more wiki-like and open to anyone in the
editing community. We want to give volunteers tools to contribute in ways
they find satisfying and meaningful.
>From now on, we'll put staff in the position of being the liaison between
the community and each class, and free up time from community volunteers
like you to focus on the aspects of helping with the class you like most,
rather than a one-size-fits-all approach as we have in the past.
In fact, we’ve developed ways to make volunteering easier: we’ve set up a
new categories system for student work. Our goal is to tag student work
with specific suggestions for how to improve them. If you enjoy copyediting
or wikifying articles, you'll find find pages to copyedit or wikify. If you
want to provide feedback on a draft, you can find student drafts awaiting
feedback. If you like finding freely licensed images for articles, you can
see student articles that would benefit from images. For an example of the
new system, check out our central portal for tagged articles:
You have demonstrated your commitment by generously giving your time. We
are grateful for all of your hard work and recognize the critical role you
have played for our professors and students! If you do have a class you've
been helping out with as an Ambassador and wish to continue doing so,
please feel free to, but don't feel obligated to. You're also welcome to
continue using the Wikipedia Ambassador title, but as a community
designation rather than a formal affiliation with Wiki Ed.
So we can be sure to recognize volunteers who continue to go above and
beyond, we've created a self-report form for you to track your volunteer
time. The self-report form will help Wiki Ed write letters of
recommendation for your work, scholarships, fellowships, grants, or
academic applications if you ever need them. We will also be using data
reported in this form to prioritize passionate volunteers for Wiki Ed
scholarships to events like WikiConference USA. You can find the form here:
We hope that this change of direction gives volunteers like you more power
over how you spend your time.
If you have any questions, please let me know offlist.
on behalf of the entire Wiki Ed team
Director of Programs
Wiki Education Foundation