Wiki Education heads to linguistics and history conferences this week

This week, Wiki Education hits the road to recruit new instructors into our programs. We’re thrilled to take on 2017 after supporting a record 515 courses and nearly 11,000 student editors last year.

American Historical Association

This week I’ll return to the American Historical Association’s annual meeting in Denver, along with Classroom Program Manager Helaine Blumenthal, who received her PhD in History from the University of California, Berkeley. During the pre-conference Digital History workshop, Helaine and I will share with attendees how students develop digital literacy skills during a Wikipedia-editing assignment. Last year, our workshop led to some great discussions about Wikipedia’s role in preserving digital history, how students can participate, and how crowdsourcing provides opportunities for documenting histories and perspectives of marginalized communities. We’ll come together with a larger group of workshop attendees to answer questions about syllabus design and building an assignment that benefits both Wikipedia and students.

Over the years, we’ve supported students who have improved Wikipedia’s coverage of environmental history, notable women in history, theater history, history of science, art history, American history, Canadian history, and local history. Students in our Classroom Program have learned how some people haven’t made the history books, empowering them to change that for the future. Along the way, students curb Wikipedia’s systemic bias and become better researchers who can discern credible sources from low-quality ones.

If you’re attending AHA’s annual meeting this year, please join us to learn more about how Wikipedia fits into the History classroom:

Digital History workshops

This session will offer a lesson plan attendees can drop into their classrooms that uses Wikipedia to train students in digital literacy and evaluation of sources. We will also discuss the caveats that accompany this kind of lesson plan and the role academic historians can play in developing knowledge on Wikipedia. After the session, we’ll join other participants in small groups to workshop Wikipedia assignments.

  • Date: Thursday, January 5, 2017
  • Workshops: 9:00am–10:15am, 10:30am–12:00pm; Table talks: 12:00–1:00pm
  • Location: Colorado Convention Center, Room 206

Digital Alley booth in the exhibit hall

Over the weekend, Helaine and I will be available in the AHA Digital Alley to speak to conference attendees about the benefits of teaching with Wikipedia. We’ll be available for one-on-one conversations about how Wikipedia assignments fit into an upcoming course.

  • Friday, January 6th: 9:00am–6:00pm
  • Saturday, January 7th: 9:00am–6:00pm
  • Sunday, January 8th: 9:00am–12:00pm

Linguistic Society of America

In Austin, Outreach Manager Samantha Weald will return to the Linguistic Society of America’s annual meeting. Shortly after we announced a partnership with the LSA to improve Wikipedia’s coverage of language and linguistics, Samantha attended the 2016 conference. Since then, we have supported 25 linguistics courses across the United States and Canada and announced the first language-related Wikipedia Visiting Scholars relationship. Astonishingly, students have added almost 300,000 words to articles about language convergence, German dialects, and subjectification. Now, the world has access to important information about linguistics they couldn’t access before.

With so many students learning how to edit articles in this discipline, we created an editing guide specific to linguistics to get them started. We’re excited to share this guide and other tools to get new linguistics instructors involved in our programs. Stop by to see Samantha and work out details of your Wikipedia assignment later this week:

Exhibit hall

  • Friday, January 6th: 10:00am–5:30pm
  • Saturday, January 7th: 10:00am–5:30pm
  • Sunday, January 8th: 8:30–11:00am


2 thoughts on “Wiki Education heads to linguistics and history conferences this week

  1. When I attended the American Historical Association concerence, I was amazed to see how often Wikipedia was not only mentioned, but mentioned in a positive light during presentation. When I asked some of the presenters had they worked with anyone from Wikipedia or Wiki Ed, they all said no, that they crafted student assignments on their own.

    Considering the changing attitude among AHA, I think it’s a great time for Wiki Ed to introduce itself and show ways to maximize learning. Perhaps next year Wiki Ed can give a talk and a panel session.

    1. Bob, I’m glad to hear you’ve seen a better reception as of late. I attended last year to present during the pre-conference Digital History workshop sessions (also presenting there this year). The energy and positive reception I felt led to our return this year, and I’m hoping to capitalize during our time in the exhibit hall. Please do stop by and see us, perhaps with a friend in tow. We’re excited to continue working with historians to make Wikipedia even better.

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