Education/Newsletter/June 2014/Wikimedia Serbia teacher education course accredited by the Republic of Serbia

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By Mile Kiš (Wikimedia Serbia), Filip Maljković (Wikimedia Serbia), & Ivana Madžarević (Wikimedia Serbia)

After the Serbian Ministry of Education prescribed that as of September 2014 all students in the second year of secondary school curriculum must study wiki tools, the Institute for the Improvement of Knowledge and Education has included a course on Wikipedia in its catalog of accredited programs for continuous professional development of teachers, professors and other school personnel. This accreditation lasts for two years and this course will start in December.

Filip Maljković, Wikimedia Serbia's Board President, explains: "We have officially been 'accredited' to hold seminars for teachers and professors regarding wiki tools. Those seminars are mandatory for employees of educational institutions and they can choose several of them throughout the school year in order to make their quota. We can organize several of those seminars, depending on the interest of potential participants, but we are required to make at least two per year. If there's a need, we will organize several of those seminars per year, depending on our availability, of course."

Since 2013, the Serbian Institute for the Advancement of Knowledge and Education, (which among other things deals with technical assistance in the preparation of programs of education at primary, secondary and vocational schools) decided that students, through a number of hours at the Computer Science, should study Wiki tools. This step of the Institute and the Ministry was crucial in the following efforts of the EduWiki project of Wikimedia Serbia, which increasingly involved not only the students but the teaching staff in the project.

Since October 2013, preparations were made for a special course dedicated to teaching and senior level staff in primary and secondary schools and high schools. As per the regulations of the Republic of Serbia, there are officially accredited courses for teachers within the catalog of continuous professional development within the jurisdiction of the Institute, it was necessary to invest a lot of effort in getting the accreditation.

Numerous meetings, discussions and consultations with several partners, has led to the creation of the course “Usage of Wikipedia in teaching and learning”. It took eight months of waiting and several levels of evaluation in order to receive accreditation course. Starting in September, and over the next two years, teachers, staff and school administrators will have the opportunity to attend these courses. According to the catalog criteria, the course carries 8 points and takes the same number of hours. It is designed for all categories but its priority area is ​​strengthening the professional capacity of staff, particularly in the area of ​​innovative teaching approach and methods.

Wikimedia Serbia and the Academic Board of the Wikimedia Serbia is working hard on the preparation of teaching for its first participants. More than a dozen brochures and leaflets are being translated and adapted as well as concepts for teaching. Also Wikimedia Serbia is working on the promotion and presentation to the general public. Look for more info to come!