Posted by: | 4th Jul, 2009

Wiki Activity

As part of module four, the class was asked to collaborate in a wiki environment. Turns out that there was a problem with my user name and I could not log in to edit the wiki or participate in the discussion, however I still contributed by having a classmate post for me. Working in a wiki environment is not completely new to me, so I can reflect on this activity along with my prior experiences. Here are some wiki thoughts:

  • What I value most about wikis is the idea that many people are contributing to a single document; a valuable way to promote social-constructivism, and most importantly knowledge building. Section B of ETEC 565 had the opportunity to share their wisdom and insight to produce a response to several prompts. There is, I THINK, far more value in this type of exercise than to simply have students provide individual responses sent to the instructor. Learning is a social activity and the more social the better!
  • The discussion feature of the wiki allowed a forum to share and discuss ideas and the document portion seemed to be the canvas on which those ideas were painted. This seemed to be an efficient system. I also like the ability to revert to previous drafts of the wikis, a neat feature for safety and recovery.
  • I think it is time that people rethink their attitudes toward wikis. I’m referring to the notion that a wiki can’t be considered  reliable source of information. Wikipedia has always been slammed for this, but I think Wikipedia has many safeguards preventing false info. After all, when false info is published in an encyclopedia, it remains forever; when the same happens on Wikipedia the page is flagged and investigated.
  • The fact that my username did not work reminded me that technology, despite best intentions, does not always; there are issues inherent with trying new tools in the classroom. All too often, I have planned great plans that use technology only to have technical issues that hampered the learning experience. Still, we must persist and move on.

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