I'm pleased to let you know that Wikimini in French (http://fr.wikimini.org)
has reached 10 000 articles. For those who don't know our project, Wikimini
is a free encyclopedia written by children and young teenagers, both at
school and at home. It currently exists in French and the site is based on
Mediawiki (same software used by Wikipedia).
On this very special occasion, our aspiring encyclopedists were asked to
choose 3 words that would best describe the project in their eyes. A word
cloud was built using the words we had received and their frequency. I
wanted to share it with you, so I translated it in English:
I hope you'll find it interesting and inspiring.
I'm so curious to know more about what everybody does within their
education programmes around the world, especially after hearing about what
Jan Ainali at Wikimedia Sverige has told me about the education day in
So, I thought about how we best may share this, and this may definitely not
be the absolutely best idea but I'll just send it out to you to see what
you might think.
So, I've put the people together that I know work with education and in or
in close collaboration with Wikimedia in one or another way, in groups of
three. You may see this here:
So my first idea is to simply have a hangout in these groups where we share
ideas about our various education programmes. It would be great to hear
* Structure of the programme
* Current activities
* Mistakes (or rather, things to learn from)
Please do add any aspects you may find relevant for a talk like this.
I would suggest that these conversations are to take place in May if that
may be possible, and that we briefly summarise what we have learned during
these talks so we can all take part of everybody's conversations. The
reason I only put three per groups is to make it easier to find a time that
works for everyone, and also to make time for dialogue which is may be
better with fewer people.
Please do let me know what you think about this, and if someone is
forgotten, please do add yourself to the list, we may be four in groups
(and it is four in a group already).
And do you generally find this to be a good idea?
My hope is that this will have us learn from each other, and to feel more
connected with our various educational efforts and ideas.
I wish you all a great weekend!
*Every single contribution to Wikipedia is a gift of free knowledge to
I would like all of you to try an interactive online Wikipedia course which was developed by user:Dcoetzee (I think he is not in this maillist, and if he is, I hope he does not mind). It is called Wikipedia Adventure and it could (and IMHO should) be an alternative to the Online Training resource.
beta version available here:
what do you think?
Vojtech Dostal, WM Czech Rep.
Mail vojtech.dostal(a)centrum.cz <vojtech.dostal(a)centrum.cz>
Cool magazine coverage of Ukraine Education program!
On Mon, Apr 22, 2013 at 11:18 AM, Юрій Пероганич <perohanych(a)gmail.com>wrote:
> April 12, 2013 ▪ Liubomyr Krupnytskyi
> Wikipedia as a School Project
> Oleksandr Zheliba, lecturer at Nizhyn University in Chernihiv Oblast,
> encourages his students to write Wikipedia articles instead of reports and
> University curricula demand that students be given creative individual
> assignments. These largely take the form of “reports” which students often
> copy from their predecessors or download from the Internet. Assistant
> Professor Oleksandr Zheliba of the Mykola Hohol Nizhyn State University
> does not forbid his students from writing reports but offers them an
> alternative: for the third year now, students can create (or edit) articles
> in Wikipedia. In addition to the obvious advantages for the
> Ukrainian-language segment of this online reference resource, this
> approach has other benefits. Young people develop a better understanding of
> the topics they are working on and also acquire technical skills. Most
> importantly though, it changes their attitude towards studies, because the
> results of their work are not just seen by their professor, but also by
> thousands of online users.
> *U.W.: Your experience forces a person to look at Wikipedia from a
> different perspective – it transforms from a source of information into a
> teaching tool. What led you to this idea?*
> About eight years ago, the Ministry of Education introduced a mandatory
> course in modern information technology. This course is taken by fifth-year
> students at every higher education institution. Specialists specifically
> came to our university with a training programme for teachers. Among other
> things, it included tasks that would teach students to implement the
> results of their work in the form of presentations, web-sites and booklets.
> I liked the idea, but when I started working with students, most of them
> fell short of the necessary standard. I also taught history and needed to
> search for a lot of professional information, finding it in large amounts
> in Wikipedia. When I saw that something was incorrect, I submitted my
> corrections. This is when I thought of involving students in this type of
> activity. So I suggested that they edit Wikipedia as an alternative to
> doing projects. If they edited Wikipedia articles, they, no doubt, learned
> to search, select, save and sort information.
> *READ ALSO: The Light of Education<http://ukrainianweek.com/History/75920>
> *U.W.: How does this method differ from others that are usually used by
> high school and university teachers? What are its advantages?*
> At a meeting of graduates in my high school, I came across an album
> displayed on a stand in the literature room. It contained essays that we
> wrote as pupils. I was so happy that they had been preserved. How else can
> you show a young person that his or her work is important? Following the
> established methods of teaching, if you give a task to a pupil (for
> example, making a knight out of plasticine), you have to put it on display
> for everyone to see so that the child can also see the results of his/her
> work and is encouraged to continue to work diligently. In Wikipedia,
> everything is in front of the teacher, who can check the work done by a
> student. Let’s see, the article was edited by someone: it used to look like
> this and these are the changes after editing. You can see the progress:
> what was done, who did the work, on what days and even at what time. In
> other words, Wikipedia permits the monitoring of both the process and the
> end result. Another benefit is that this is not the writing of reports “for
> the desk drawer”.. In some cases, they become the starting point for term
> papers, but for the most part, they gather dust somewhere on, in or under
> the teacher’s desk.
> *READ ALSO: Alma Pater <http://ukrainianweek.com/Society/17561>*
> *U.W.: I guess that everyone knows the value of a student’s report these
> It is really unfortunate that all of this information (no matter how it is
> written) goes down the drain. This does not only pertain to reports. There
> was a period at our university, when students made presentations on a
> certain topic. But what were these presentations in reality? They took
> pieces of information from Wikipedia and other sources… It was not clear
> who the real author was. So the benefit was dubious. One pedagogical rule
> says: for a person to have the desire to work, he/she needs to see the
> point of it. It is important for everyone to understand that the result of
> their work can be useful to someone and that their efforts have not been in
> vain. Another advantage is a better understanding of the substance of the
> material. Confucius once said: “I hear and I forget; I see and I remember;
> I do and I understand”.
> *U.W.: How do students react to your innovation?*
> It depends. There were those who simply wanted to get the highest grade
> with a minimum amount of work, but they soon got drawn into it. A student
> created an article; I made a few comments and suggested revising some
> things. Later, I saw that he was more eager to write the next article and
> made fewer mistakes. Then he tackled another article. Students work on
> reports in their freshman year. They have archive and regional ethnology
> practical work – these are essentially tiny research projects, and their
> results are quite suitable for publication in Wikipedia. In my opinion,
> this is much more efficient than having this information gather dust until
> it is eventually sent to an archive or thrown out as scrap paper. Many
> questions arise during the process. A little two-part handbook would be
> good to have. One part would contain the rules for editing Wikipedia
> articles and a collection of templates needed for a certain branch of
> knowledge. The second part would offer tips on writing articles on history
> or other subjects.
> *READ ALSO: Knowledge is Power – and Cash<http://ukrainianweek.com/Society/76007>
> *U.W.: When students work on Wikipedia articles to fulfil a teacher’s
> task, doesn’t it contradict the spirit of this electronic encyclopedia,
> which is created on a completely voluntary basis?*
> Not at all. Each student chooses his/her own form of work and his/her own
> area in laboratory classes. If students can write excellent articles for
> Wikipedia, let them continue to hone this skill. But if it is not their cup
> of tea, then they shouldn’t tackle it. There are other options. In the
> first year of studies, history students are taught specialized disciplines.
> One of the tasks includes drawing their family tree. Some do it and forget
> about it, while others dig deeper. If in their freshman year, students
> realize that this is something interesting and become “hooked” on this
> work, they could then suggest to the teacher that they would like to edit
> this segment of Wikipedia, which will be counted as their individual work.
> *U.W.: How did the university administration react to your initiative?
> Are any of your colleagues following your example?*
> Types of individual work are proposed by a teacher, and are simply
> approved at staff meetings. As far as the attitude of the administration is
> concerned, there is no objection, just understanding. I know for a fact
> that there are teachers who edit Wikipedia articles themselves, but it is
> hard for me to say whether they propose this kind of work to their
> students. Many come to this idea on their own. Some of my colleagues may
> want to work along these lines, but are afraid to admit that they lack
> competence in something. Not only before their students but also before
> each other. The above-mentioned handbook on editing Wikipedia is not as
> important for students, as it is for teachers.
> *READ ALSO: Undeclared War: Government Conducts “Creeping DeUkrainization”<http://ukrainianweek.com/Society/40879>
> *U.W.: In this case, the community is more virtual than real. Does this
> type of work give a sense of community?*
> To some, it may be their first experience of unpaid public work that
> nevertheless, brought satisfaction. Creating Wikipedia articles may
> sometimes hurt youthful maximalism, because you may be corrected, but a
> person has to go through this. I think a sense of community comes later,
> when a person takes a more conscientious approach. Also, editing conflicts
> can arise as you work with other colleagues. You then begin to interact
> more closely and learn about the other people working on the same topic.
> You have one vision, he/she has another, and you need to find arguments and
> present them clearly. This is also something that has to be learned
> Kind regards
> Yuri Perohanych, WMUA BM&ED
Learning & Evaluation *
Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in
the sum of all knowledge. Help us make it a reality!
Donate to Wikimedia <https://donate.wikimedia.org/>
This is currently published on my user space on Wikinews at
as done in order to determine some of the issues that students are facing
with the review process at Wikinews in light of student complaints to their
instructor. I am hoping to do a follow up for it at some point in the
future to provide more detailed analysis on review processes on project,
but thought in the interim it might be of interest to both researchers and
people in education.
Wikinews Review Analysis
< User:LauraHale <http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/User:LauraHale>
One of the greatest challenges in attracting and retaining new contributors
to English Wikinews is the project's review process. This process requires
the journalist to have a symbiotic relationship with the reviewer as the
pair both work towards getting an article published. The review process
involves the submitted news article being checked for copyright,
newsworthiness, verifiability, neutral point of view and compliance with
the style guide. This process is compacted ideally into a window of
opportunity of no longer than 24 to 48 hours. It can be extremely
challenging for those not used to the style requirements, neutrality
requirements, verification requirements and above all doing this sort of
For those from Wikipedia, the review process on English Wikinews is close
in scope to English Wikipedia's Good Article
on a more compressed timetable. For those who have been to secondary school
or university, it mirrors a teacher giving you an assignment with your
grade being based on meeting the criteria stated on a rubric, and failure
to pass requires re-submission. If you do not work to the rubric, you just
do not pass and on English Wikinews, that means not getting published.
When you review regularly, you begin to notice certain patterns that
frequently occur in the review process. Most often, these appear to be a
failure to understand what is news or a failure to read and try to write to
the style guide specifications. Observational analysis only gets you so far
though when trying to determine a problem and how to develop solutions for
what appears to be a problem of articles not passing review or people being
discouraged from submitting.
>From the period between January 1, 2013 and April 12, 2013, 203 failed
reviews were examined to determine which criteria were the biggest
stumbling block. The articles reviewed included published articles,
non-published articles moved to user space and deleted articles that were
not published. For each review, the primary author was assessed as either
accredited reporter, regular contributor with 10 or more published
articles, new reporter with 9 or fewer articles, or University of
Wollongong student. Of the 202 reviews examined, 104 were for articles by
new contributors, 47 by University of Wollongong students, 40 by regular
contributors and 11 by accredited reporters. Each review looked at also
noted if the article finally reached a published state. There were 110
different articles reviewed, of which 33 were published and 77 were not.
What were problems for articles did not pass review? Bearing in mind
articles can be marked not published for multiple reasons, 23 articles were
not passed for copyright reasons, 103 for newsworthiness issues, 70 for
verifiability issues, 43 for neutrality issues and 96 for style issues.
[image: English Wikinews Review
The different cohorts appear to have different sets of issues. Accredited
reporters did not have any problems with copyright or plagiarism. 57% of
University of Wollongong reviews and 51% of new reporters had not passing
reviews because of newsworthiness concerns. Accredited reporters had
problems with verifiability at 45% versus 26% for University of Wollongong
reporters. 25% of new contributors and 29% of University of Wollongong
reporters had problems with neutrality. 60% of University of Wollongong had
problems complying with the style guide compared to 33% of regular
Some of these patterns are explainable. There are times when it is
difficult to get reviewers, and an article may languish for 24 to 48 hours.
By that time, the article is no longer news or requires more and new
information in order to stay fresh. This does not explain all of it though.
Observational analysis suggests that at least two thirds of these articles
fail newsworthiness because of a lack of a clear focus on the news topic,
writing a news article as the topic itself is set to go stale, taking too
long to address problems with previous reviews or going through the review
process repeatedly to the point where by the time everything else gets
fixed, the story is no longer news.
In many cases, reviewers look at some things before others. Newsworthiness
and style guide compliance are two of the most easily visible problems.
They do not require looking at external links and doing intensive
examination of the text to look for more systemic, underlying problems. The
article does not state when an event happened or makes clear it happened 4
days ago? The article is written using lots of non-relative dating? There
are lots of external links inside the article? The article is clearly not
written in inverted pyramid style? The title lacks a verb? The first
paragraph does not answer who, what, when, how or why this is news? There
is no reason to look beyond newsworthiness and style as these obvious
problems need to be fixed before going forward. Copyright, NPOV and
verification can come later.
For accredited reporters, many of them are accredited because they do
original reporting. This often requires sending things to reviewers via
e-mail or posting extensive notes, pictures, audio, video on the talk page.
Verification is also often one of the last steps in the review process.
Thus, it makes sense that reporters with a track record of success are
likely to get caught up here.
Multiple problems identified on a review decreases the likelihood of
publication. Only 22 failed reviews were present on articles that
subsequently were published. This compares 74 reviews that identified
multiple problems where the article was never published. The only review
for an accredited reporter which identified multiple problems was
subsequently published. Regular contributors had 11 total reviews with
multiple problems, of which 7 of those reviews were done on articles that
were subsequently published. 14 reviews identifying multiple problems for
articles by new contributors went on to be published, with 45 reviews on
articles that were not published. All 24 of the UoW student articles with
reviews indicating multiple problems failed to reach a published state. The
percentages form an almost predictable slope based on experience for
chances of an article becoming published at 100% published for accredited
reporters reviewed with multiple issues, 63% for regulars, 23% for new
contributors, and 0% for University of Wollongong students.
On the other hand, there is no significant difference between articles with
only one issue identified being on an article subsequently getting
published. 81 reviews identifying only one problem were on articles that
were not subsequently published versus 24 reviews identifying only one
problem on articles that were subsequently published. This puts a
publishing rate at 22.8% for 1 problem reviews versus 22.9% for 2+ problems
reviews. There are differences in cohort performance when only one problem
is identified: 70% of accredited reporter reviews are on articles
subsequently published, 36% for regulars, 11% for new contributors and 4%
for University of Wollongong reporters. With the exception of the
University of Wollongong cohort, reviews that identify only one problem are
less likely to lead to an article eventually arriving at a published state.
With newsworthiness a major reason for all cohorts as a reason for a failed
review, there are distinct differences in the likelihood of this problem
being overcome based on cohort. Overall, 15% of all articles with
newsworthiness cited as a reason for an article not being published
subsequently becoming published. 40% of accredited reporter reviews
indicating this problem were on articles that eventually became published.
This rate is comparable to regular reporter reviews, with 38% of that
cohort becoming published after a failed review citing newsworthiness. New
reporters have an 11% rate of later publishing. 3% of University of
Wollongong reporters reviews indicating newsworthiness problems reach a
54% of the time when newsworthiness is a problem, a reviewer indicates some
other problem with the article. For articles with multiple problems
including newsworthiness, 93% of the time there is also a style problem,
46% of the time there is a verifiability problem , 44% of the time there is
a point of view problem and 4% of the time there is a copyright problem.
[image: English Wikinews Average
For articles that are not passed on their first attempt, there are
different continuing progress responses for each cohort. For accredited
reporters, they have one failed review before either submitting
successfully on their second attempt or before abandoning their work. This
suggests that accredited reporters are able to successfully respond to
feedback or understand when an article has systemic problems that will
result in it never being published. New and University of Wollongong
reporters are much more likely to continue to try to resubmit multiple
times, both successfully and unsuccessfully, than their regular reporter
counterparts. 4 new reporters out of 46 submitted their work 4 or more
times unsuccessfully. This contrasts to 3 out of 10 for regular reporters
and 4 out of 18 for University of Wollongong students : 8% to 30% to 22%.
High number of submissions for rereview are unlikely to lead to publication
of the article. Of the articles finally published, only one had failed at
review more than three times, United States deportation policies challenged
in Santa Clara County,
which had 6 failed reviews before being published. In this particular case,
the article was failed 3 times for copyright reasons, once for
newsworthiness, 3 times for verifiability, 4 times for neutrality and 2
times for style.
Accredited reporters were the most successful as a percentage of total
articles with failed initial reviews subsequently getting published, with 8
articles published after only 1 failed review. Regular reporters had 15
published articles out of 27 for a 55% success rate, new reporters had 9
published out of 57 for a 15% success rate, and University of Wollongong
students had 1 out of 21 for a success rate of 4%. As reporters become more
acclimatized, they are more likely to translate failed reviews into
successfully published articles.
This confirms observational bias that English Wikinews has a high barrier
of entry in terms of adapting to the local review process. It also confirms
that the feedback system for the review system works for established
contributors who have figured out the basics of preparing an article for a
published state. New reporters and University of Wollongong students have
problems that are similar, but new reporters are either more willing to
work through failure to accomplish a goal or more likely to find community
members who are willing to assist them getting the article over the line.
That the percentage of new and University of Wollongong students getting
not publish ready reviews for style suggests they are unfamiliar with the
style guide. How this can be addressed is difficult because it appears as
if they are not reading the style guide. One thought for increasing the
likelihood of getting an article published is to provide a form of
motivation that will encourage a reporter to keep with it until their work
—though not necessarily a specific article— is published. This may need to
be coupled with an improved feedback system, though how this would work
with a cohort of editors who are unmotivated to read existing materials
designed to increase their chances of getting published or interact with
contributors to seek advice in getting published, calls an over reliance on
an improved feedback system as a primary method to increase chances of
getting published into question.
Who are the campus ambassador(s) to Rutgers? Or could be if we don't have any?
IBM gave Rutgers a research version of Watson, and I think we should
try to recruit it into the education program as an editor. This might
work out pretty well, but I don't think we want it to happen in an
uncontrolled fashion whereby e.g., people could be accused of not
having proper Bot Approvals Group clearance.
Also, it turns out that Watson uses Wikipedia text to make decisions,
including medical decisions on which there could be potential
liability issues that we need to explore more closely if we want to be
prudent about them. I believe we could resolve all those issues by
recruiting IBM Watson as an editor in the Education Program subject to
the ordinary evaluations and in full exposure to the scrutiny of the