Wiki Education is excited to announce a partnership with the National Communication Association (NCA). NCA is an organization advancing Communication as the discipline that studies all forms, modes, media, and consequences of communication through humanistic, social scientific, and aesthetic inquiry. Through this partnership and Wikipedia initiative, NCA will encourage its members to participate in Wiki Education’s programs, increasing the availability of information about communication studies on Wikipedia.
One part of NCA’s mission is to promote the widespread appreciation of the importance of communication in public and private life and disseminate knowledge about communication so people can use it to solve human problems. Wikipedia is one of the most-visited websites, making it an important platform to share high quality academic knowledge with the world. At Wiki Education, we run programs that help teach program participants how to add this important information to Wikipedia.
In the Classroom Program, university instructors assign students to write Wikipedia articles, empowering them to share knowledge with the world. Students research course-related topics that are missing or underrepresented, synthesize the available literature, and use our tools and trainings to add distilled information to Wikipedia. Essentially, students turn literature reviews into a resource for the world, learning how Wikipedia works along the way. While contributing cited, well-founded information, they help combat fake news on the internet. After supporting tens of thousands of students, we’ve proven this model brings high-quality academic information to the public and meaningful learning experiences to students.
To better understand the types of skills students obtain from contributing to Wikipedia as a course assignment, Wiki Education sponsored Dr. Zach McDowell, of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, to conduct a study of our program participants during the Fall 2016 term. After careful analysis of both quantitative and qualitative data, the study found that Wikipedia-based assignments enhance students’ digital literacy and critical research skills, foster their ability to write for a public audience, promote collaboration, and motivate them more than traditional assignments. Students also gain a valuable understanding and appreciation for a source of information they use every day: Wikipedia.
Thanks to our new partners at the National Communication Association, Wiki Education will facilitate more contributions to Wikipedia from students critically studying communication. To join our initiative, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.