Using Wikis in the Classroom – Innovate


The June/July edition of Innovate has just been released, and in it are several great articles that will be of interest to practitioners and researchers in the area of online learning etc.

My favourite in this edition is an article by S. Pixy Ferris and Hilary Wilder titled Uses and Potentials of Wikis in the Classroom. . The authors introduce their research with reference to the notion of secondary orality as a means of understanding the impact of electronic and cyber technologies on teaching – asserting that they see teachers as part of a print paradigm of learning whereas they propose that students are increasingly part of a secondary-oral paradigm of learning.

The article traverses topics such as the way emergent technologies go through phases of acceptance and use (they use Wikipedia as an example here), through to focusing on how wikis can be used to promote collaboration and a shared construction of knowledge in an online environment. Some useful comparisons with blogs and other social software are also referred to.

The article is optomistic in tone and in the view of how wikis can be used by educators, providing a broader picture view of how they may be implemented unlike a number of case study reports I’ve read recently.

The full list of articles in this edition of Innovate are:

  • From Digital Divide to Digital Dividend: What Will It Take? by John Daniel and Paul West
  • Teaching Social Software with Social Software by Ulises Mejias
  • Uses and Potentials of Wikis in the Classroom by S. Pixy Ferris and Hilary Wilder
  • Synchronous Discussion in Online Courses: A Pedagogical Strategy for Taming the Chat Beast by Craig W. Smith
  • Teaching Students about Plagiarism: An Internet Solution to an Internet Problem by Eleanour Snow
  • Creative Commons: A New Tool for Schools by Howard Pitler
  • Term Length as an Indicator Of Attrition in Online Learning by David Diaz and Ryan Cartnal

NB – you must sign up for an account (free) with Innovate to see the full articles.

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