Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Wikipedia and the University, a case study

Thanks to Lyn Parker for alerting me to this new article (priced):
Knight, C. and Pryke, S. (2012)"Wikipedia and the University, a case study."
Teaching in Higher Education. (Currently listed as a "forthcoming article, available online DOI:10.1080/13562517.2012.666734)
I was interested to see that "use of Wikipedia is highest amongst trainee teachers, a finding that corresponds to our perception based on anecdotal observation that use of the encyclopaedia is widespread; possibly even a predominant resource, for teachers and children within British schools" since this has some relevance to the research into school children's information behaviour being carried out here in the iSchool. Another interesting finding was that a good number of lecturers who forbid their students to use Wikipedia, use it themselves, feeling that they are able to discriminate when to use Wikipedia, whereas their students aren't.
The abstract reads "This article discusses the use of Wikipedia by academics and students for learning and teaching activities at Liverpool Hope University. [...] Based upon a sample of 133 academics and 1222 students, our principal findings were: (1) 75% of academics and students use Wikipedia; (2) student use is typically confined to the initial stages of assessments; (3) a quarter of academics provide guidance on how to use Wikipedia and (4) 70% of academics use Wikipedia for background information for teaching purposes, something that it is not influenced by whether student use is tolerated or not. Our conclusion is that whilst Wikipedia is now unofficially integrated into universities, it is not ‘the’ information resource as feared by many and that an enlightened minority of academics have attempted to assimilate it into their teaching."
Photo by Sheila Webber: Spring in the park, Sheffield, March 2012

1 comment:

Business Studies blog said...

Hi Glad you found it helpful,

(Although I see they have got the author names the wrong way around) - I am currently working towards a larger project building upon this work that will look at wikipedia usage (and other information sources) across a number of Universities.


Charles Knight