What is Wikipedia? It’s the most-visited educational resource on the planet. It’s comprehensive, with more than 5 million articles on the English Wikipedia alone.
All of this knowledge comes from dedicated volunteers, but those volunteers don’t always contribute to the content that people need the most.
What’s more, while Wikipedia is the encyclopedia anyone can edit, not everybody does. Some don’t have access to books, others don’t have access to time. Other problems are systemic: At least 80% of Wikipedians are men. Crucially, Wikipedia reflects the knowledge of its volunteers. When we diversify Wikipedia’s content, we improve Wikipedia by adding information that’s relevant to everyone. When students are assigned to write about topics that need improvement, using university resources and expert guidance, they can make a real difference.
The number of words students have donated to the world. That’s 97,600 double-spaced pages, shared with everyone, for free.
37,000The number of articles students have created or improved.
6%Students in our program contributed 6% of the overall science content created for Wikipedia in April 2016.
147,000,000Student editors’ work on Wikipedia has been seen 147 million times. That’s twice the population of France.
Students have tackled articles on:
“The Wiki Education Foundation is our single most effective tool for boosting women’s authorship on Wikipedia.”
– Sue Gardner, former head of the Wikimedia Foundation
Students are also tackling articles that may be missing as a result of Wikipedia’s systemic lack of women editors. These include biographies of underrepresented persons, articles on women’s health and politics, reliable health information and other academic topics.
That’s how many volunteer Wikipedia editors are women. We’re working to change that.
That’s the percentage of Wiki Ed’s student editors who are women.
We’re bringing more women to Wikipedia, but we’re also bringing more content about women to Wikipedia. Men and women in Wiki Ed classes have created Wikipedia biographies of women across fields and time. Some examples:
When students take on a Wikipedia assignment, they’re engaging with a complex culture. But our tools make them better prepared to contribute meaningful content than almost any other new editor. Students enter the site’s culture prepared to make a meaningful contribution. And we’re just getting started.