So you’re looking for fulfilling professional development…

It’s the last week to register for our upcoming online course in collaboration with the National Archives! Join a network of scholars who want to hone career skills while making Wikipedia more representative of all history.

What will I learn in the course?

Our course will help you achieve the key career diversity skills that academics with PhDs said they didn’t learn in grad school, but that have been vital to their success beyond the academy: communication, collaboration, intellectual self-confidence, and digital literacy. (Read more about that in another blog post.) These skills are relevant across all careers, not exclusively in academia, so consider taking the course regardless of your industry.

Dr. Rachel Boyle, an alum, remarked that learning how to write Wikipedia articles was an inspiring writing exercise that allowed her to build upon the existing skills she has as a public historian: “Contributing [content] to Wikipedia requires a different mindset than academic writing,” she wrote. She found the process to be “valuable inspiration for any kind of writing.”

Wikipedia is also a powerful tool for public scholarship. For those interested in making sure the public understands key concepts in their field, we offer a chance to learn how to leverage the site for that communication. “Contributing [content] to Wikipedia directly responds to the public’s existing digital habits and browsing patterns,” said Dr. Boyle. This course allows you to share your unique knowledge as widely as possible. After all, the mission of Wikipedia is to capture “the sum of all human knowledge” – let us help you achieve that goal by joining an ecosystem of people passionate about open knowledge.

What is the experience like?

This cohort of Wiki Scholars will meet online for an hour a week over 12 weeks. Learn from our Wikipedia Experts on staff about how Wikipedia works and how you can help close the site’s gender content gap. Collaborate with other newcomers, learn from them, and build your intellectual self-confidence by becoming a part of an online community of Wikipedians.

“I’ve had many advantages in my life, but not even all of that education and privilege has always let me see myself as having authority,” wrote Adjunct Assistant Professor Dr. Erin Siodmak in a post-course reflection. “I owe a part of my new feeling of authority to this course. … It’s great to have ‘experts’ like academics and scholars work to improve Wikipedia, but given that Wikipedia is a tool for spreading knowledge (and given a feminist perspective on epistemology), wouldn’t it be great for everyone to see themselves as experts?”

Many in our course have tried making a difference on Wikipedia before, like freelance writer Eilene Lyon, and found that the barriers to entry were great. In another reflective blog post, Eilene explained how the regular communication with both our Wikipedia Experts on staff and with the other newcomers in the course made for a fulfilling and encouraging learning environment. For Eilene, the course opportunity combined her passion for closing the gender gap in public knowledge and her interest in Wikipedia editing: “I jumped at the chance to learn how to be a Wikipedian while improving women’s suffrage articles.”

How do I register?

Register for this one of a kind professional development opportunity before May 17th. See the course landing page for more information and to read testimonials. Or head straight to our registration page for course details:

Image: File:Woman Suffrage Procession 1913 opening.jpg, public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.


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