WikiEducator:Community building strategy

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Learning within a global community

Image courtesy of Kjarrett

Building a Wikieducator Community

Strategies for building a WikiEducator Community

  • Level of participation is important - leveraging people, but we have people in communityalready.
  • What about taking the project to exisitng communities and find out how this building happens and tell some stories and illict some feed back that could inform how to go about building true community learning. It may or may be required but so much more could be as documented and facilitated in this way.


Ethnographic Strategy

An ethnographic strategy could be to employ a longitudinal observation as an evaluative tool that can seeks to describe participative projects and elicit the point of view of those who use the resource/s. In this case building a learning community it may be sufficient to create a directory with working categories of collaborative wikieducator projects.

Ethnography can on the one hand clarify requirements prior to the designing of yet another new resource page, then it can provide continuous feedback for modification and review of the collaborative designs. Analysis and data collection occur simultaneously and can be messy. Analysis can fuse with description. One problem with this strategy is that it necessitates an indifferent observer role, ethnographic detail entails confidentiality in the case of a wikieducator community this 'in house' analysis can prove difficult could compromise the community members.

For contents


  • Pre-school
  • Primary School
  • Secondary School
  • Tertiary level


Early Childhood Education

The aim of these pages are to provide resources and ideas for teachers of pre-school children. I will be covering the New Zealand curriculum of Te Whaariki, as well as The Montessori curriculum. Any other ECE curriculum content is welcome.


We are trying to build a community of learning or practise in the area of tourism so if you are developing, or delivering material in this area please put your name and contact details below.

  • Travel and Tourism - Hillary Jenkins, Otago Polytechnic, New Zealand - (Teritary Level)


( I think this means - translators of course material)

  • Translators - who and what languages??

Road Works.svg Work in progress, expect frequent changes. Help and feedback is welcome. See discussion page. Road Works.svg

Increasing Collaboration

To Do (considerations)

  • Initiate webconferences
    • by general interest to the community
    • by interest in collaboration (i.e., project-focused)
  • Modify Newbie Survey to ask about Collaboration Interest, Intent and Action
  • Modify Advanced User Survey, to ask about Collaboration Behaviour, Barriers and Opportunities
    • Ensure findings are communicated back to Community for feedback and further input
  • Capture lessons from Otago's 9-12 months accelerate progress
  • Develop a targeted and proactive facilitation effort (Otago's recommendation)
  • Consider charting process of facilitating international collaboration process
  • Consider developing WikiFacilitator level in WikiEd Skills Certification process
  • Use MindMapping software - with mediawiki output, editable - to create a visual image of a project, in line with strategy, and avenues for collaboration (we're exploring FreeMind - is there a mediawiki extension?
    • Consider this as part of the overall project development...i.e., each project has a Strategy / Collaboration map component


from Google Thread:

In a recent post, Sanjaya has raised a significant challenge (and opportunity) in WikiEducator - Increasing Collaboration.... Others I have spoken to have also raised this....

He says:

"Not much collaboration is visible at this stage in WikiEd. Educational institutions need to be convinced about the advantages of Open Access and the power of Wiki."

Several Questions

  • Define what your understanding of Collaboration is?
  • How do we propose to measure it, and over what intervals?
  • At this stage of WikiEd's development, the focus has been on training a critical mass of educators in wiki skills....but what are your suggestions for Increasing Collaboration on WikiEducator...

Some Ideas

  • Webconferences - focusing on areas for collaboration, or in identifying projects, people, etc.
  • Projects - where folks self-select to collaborate or appointed (dyads are particularly powerful);
  • Wishlists - an easy way to find out what's happening in the community, and where the collaborative needs are (specified down to the role)
  • Bounties - to encourage collaboration through a modest financial incentive
  • Peer recognition - i.e., non-monetary incentives
  • Other:

Please share your thoughts, ideas, etc.

- Randy

Post from Wayne Mackintosh

I'm very excited to see our community starting to think about ways to increase collaborative development.

As an aside - I think that this is positive sign attesting to the dynamic nature of communities and how they mature over time. It's tempting to distinguish capability maturity phases for WE, for example:

  • Phase 1: Basic skills development in using the wiki
  • Phase 2:. Focus on content development for own use
  • Phase 3: Collaborative content development in achieving collective goals

So it seems that WE has reached the next phase of our evolution <smile>. These are exciting times and its great to be part of the early pioneers taking collective responsibility for building the future success of OUR project. This is well aligned with our strategy - because WE is now in the phase of scaling up content development.


Cheers Wayne

Post from Leigh Blackall

Hi Randy, Wayne.

I think Wayne sets out a realistic 3 steps. And for the most part I think we as a whole are taking those steps. A slight trouble (and risk) is that different people are at different stages in this flow. So shile the L4C is focusing on Phase 1: Basic skills development in using the wiki a few of the early adopters are itching for Phase 3: Collaborative content development in achieving collective goals. Otago Polytechnic is an early adopter, and we itch for evidence of phase 3 because all too often we are having to justify our radically different approach to distance and online learning (using Wikieducator). I think we can handle this pressure, but it would be great to see some form of commitment (if resources permit it) to the facilitation of phase 3 opportunities.

Randy seems to be in a position to facilitate some phase 3. A team of facilitators would be good. The webconferences might be a good way to gather steam around making phase 3 facilitation possible, but I suspect a more targeted and proactive facilitation effort is needed.

Otago looked like it had something going in terms of a collaboration with Mauritius over our Tourism developments. Similarly with 2 people in the L4C who contributed to "our" HIV/AIDS content. But disappointingly, these have not progressed. Mostly because Otago people have not had the time or skills to begin communicating around collaboration - and so an experienced facilitator is needed. Someone who can mediate the initial stages of a collaboration.

Randy's questions
  • Define what your understanding of Collaboration is?
  • How do we propose to measure it, and over what intervals?

Collaboration is evidenced by:

  - Sustained communication
  - Negotiated outcomes
  - Shared actions
  - Shared ownership
  - Shared outcomes

This might be measured by:

  - The edit history of a page/s
  - The communication pages
  - The email list
  - Student exchange programs
  - Teacher exchange programs
  - Team teaching
  - Networked teaching and learning

Other ideas

Some indicators are:

  • Number of edits on contents created by others
  • More discussion on the discussion pages
  • Groups commited to develop content on a particular area and

continusouly working on it

  • More useful content rated by the community
  • And many more...

Otago Polytechnic - Collaboration Priorities

  • 1. Otago's HIVAIDS with...? Suggestions - webconferences, team teaching online, student and teacher exchanges
  • 2. Otago's Tourism course with...? Shared development, shared resources, team teaching, webconferences, student and teacher exchanges
  • 3. Otago's Travel blog short course ...shared resources, guest blogger, ideas exchange
  • 4. Otago's Blogging handbook...? Need short activity sheets on little things about blogging. Sheets include objective, activity steps, resources needed. Is to become a printable book with people able to pick and choose the right activity sheets for their needs and then print their customised book.
  • 5. Otago's Horticulture pages...? Need more learning activities using resources made. Need more Horticulture units to be developed - such as landscaping and building units.
  • 6. Webconferences - probably the most easy to collaborate on.. simply organise a talk and add it to the list


Reconciling High- and Low-Bandwidth Approaches

we should try to promote and support both low bandwidth and high bandwidth approaches in our collective mission-- with one caveat, that is to find creative ways of transforming high bandwidth solutions for low-bandwidth technologies.

One of our core values is that of social inclusion and the notion that access to ICTs is a fundamental right of knowledge citizens. This is not to say that we should negate our primary focus in connecting the unconnected and turning the digital divide into digital dividends. I think WE has performed admirably in the latter with our wiki ==> print technology being a show case example.

Speaking with colleagues in Africa, I believe we have a far greater challenge than access to ICTs and that it access to free content. Access to the Internet will improve all over the world over time and we need to prepare for this eventuality by developing a free alternative of the "education curriculum" for all sectors and levels. The advantage of WikiEducator's experimenting with high bandwidth examples is that we may find creative solutions that we would not have otherwise considered.

For example, with our wiki ==> pdf technology we could develop print specific templates for rich media (eg audio and video.) It would be technically possible with our architecture when opting for a printed version of WE content, that the parser could generate an ISO CDROM image of the rich media and automatically reference this in the printed study guide. In the text an activity might say -- Go and look at Video Number 7 on your CDROM and answer the following questions". The CDROM could then be posted with the print editions of the study guides produced in WIkiEducator. Remote leaners could then view the videos at local Internet cafes or mutli-purpose comunity centres.

Road Works.svg Work in progress, expect frequent changes. Help and feedback is welcome. See discussion page. Road Works.svg