Education/Newsletter/October 2014/Single

By Sara Mörtsell (Wikimedia Sweden)

Ylva Pettersson talks about her teaching and Wikipedia, from 2012 (Swedish).

Snippet: Teacher awarded with national honorary prize for using Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects.

The Swedish Foundation for Computers in Education (Datorn i Utbildningen), awarded teacher Ylva Pettersson with the jury's honorary prize for her long term work with Wikipedia in Education and pioneering teaching using Wikiversity and Wikibooks with students to openly share their learning and knowledge with the educators' community in Sweden, and contributing to the positive development of ICT and media in education. Ylva was awarded with the "Gold Apple" award (Guldäpplet) by the Foundation for Computers in Education in 2012. She is also a Wikipedian on Swedish Wikipedia and board member of Wikimedia Sweden.

Read Wikimedia Sverige's blog post here.

Read DIU's press release here.

Read more about the Wikipedia Education Program in Sweden here.

By Konstantinos Stampoulis (Wikimedia Community User Group Greece)

Snippet: Aristotle University of Thessaloniki students in a postgraduate course will translate Wikipedia articles from Italian to Greek for academic credit.

Professors and students of the School of Italian Language and Literature with a Wikipedian.

Starting with the 2014/2015 academic year, Greek Wikipedia will receive contributions from the postgraduate students in course on translation in the School of Italian Language and Literature, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. Professor Eleni Kassapi, director of the course, has agreed that the school will be giving assignments for translation of Wikipedia articles from Italian to Greek, starting with articles on theory of translation and expanding to other subjects as needed. The school will formally include the activity in the course's curriculum, and the students will be awarded with a predetermined amount of ECTS-credits for their amount of work and each student will complete up to 180 hours. A course on translation from Spanish will get assignments to translate articles on Humanities from Spanish to Greek. The program started with a lecture on September 15, 2014 by Konstantinos Stampoulis, a member of Wikimedia Community User Group Greece.

Education programs exist in Aristotle University of Thessaloniki annually since 2010, in the Schools of Medicine and Mathematics. These programs are based on the translation of articles from English to Greek Wikipedia, giving priority to high importance and best quality articles. Although translation is not among the skills demanded from mathematicians or medicine doctors, those projects had a major impact on Greek Wikipedia, filling major gaps on those thematic fields. We have great expectations from this new project in the School of Italian Language and Literature, since this time the translation will be the work of future professional translators.

Read more about the Wikipedia Education Program in Greece here.

By Mina Theofilatou, Marios Magioladitis and Konstantinos Skiadopoulos (Wikimedia Community User Group Greece)

Snippet: Three educators demonstrate how Wikipedia editing in adult education settings can generate interesting content while boosting self-confidence of learners.

Marios Magioladitis wearing a "Wikipedia belongs in education" T-shirt while presenting at CIE2014 in Corfu, Greece.

Wikimedia Education Programmes are primarily geared to the needs of primary, secondary and tertiary schooling. But what about adult education? Three educators discussed their experience using Wikipedia as a teaching tool in adult and second-chance learners' settings.

The paper "OERs in Secondary and Adult Education: Wikipedia" they co-authored was presented at the Conference on Informatics in Education (CIE) which was held 10 - 12 October 2014 in Corfu, Greece. The ultimate goal of the presentation was to encourage more educators to get involved in Wikipedia and Wikimedia editing by showing that subjects adult students are well acquainted with can generate ideas for interesting contributions!

Mina Theofilatou from Argostoli Evening Secondary School has used Wikipedia editing in her classes since 2007, with impressive results. With students from every imaginable walk of life, their contributions to Greek Wikipedia range from a photo of swimming sheep by a student shepherd, to an article on pyrography and icons created by the recent graduate Father Vassilios, to Kefalonia's Wind Farms in the context of a school project on Renewable Energy Sources. The school's latest project involved two "open science" galleries on Wikimedia Commons (read Wikimedia blog post here and here).

Kostas Skiadopoulos from Kastellani Middle School used a teamwork approach and encouraged his students to create articles on local sites of interest in Corfu.

Marios Magioladitis from Corfu Second-Chance School worked on Wikipedia with his students and then handed out questionnaires asking for their opinion on the experience. Most were excited and stated that Wikipedia editing was one of their favourite online activities!

The three intend to continue introducing new Wikimedia approaches to their teaching methods and will report again soon with their findings.

Read more about the Wikipedia Education Program in Greece here.

By Ivana Madžarević and Miroslav Loci (Wikimedia Serbia)

Participants of Wikicamp 2014 from WMRS and WMHU.
Edit-a-thon at Wikicamp 2014 from WMRS and WMHU.

Snippet: Three days, two countries, and many highly-motivated participants, resulted in hundreds of photographs and 32 articles.

Wikimedia Serbia and Wikimedia Hungary organized Wikicamp Palic-Szeged 2014 (Вики Камп Палић-Сегедин) for the first time ever this summer. The goal of this three-day event was to promote networking and to develop stronger relationships among the chapters.

During the last weekend of August, 20 volunteers, many of them students at the University of Belgrade from various faculities, gathered at Palić and Szeged. Activities included workshops on editing Wikipedia, an edit-a-thon, a photo tour, and a creative workshop for problem solving relevant case studies. Participants "camped" in student dorms at the University of Szeged.

Three days, two cities, and many highly-motivated participants, resulted in hundreds of photographs and 32 articles on Serbian Wikipedia on topics related to Serbia and Hungary, such as history, geography, religious architecture, and political science.

All articles and attendees are listed here (in English and in Serbian).

Many photos are available on Commons; and more are still being uploaded.

Read more about this collaboration on the Wikimedia Blog here.

Read more about the Wikipedia Education Program in Serbia here.

By Spiritia and Laveol (Bulgarian Wikipedia)

Snippet: Bulgarian university offers a Wikipedia research course.

Prof. Nelly Ognyanova and Vassia Atanassova with the students of the "New Media and Participatory Culture" course. 16 October 2014

In the 2014/2015 academic year, Wikipedia will become again the core subject of research in a Bulgarian university lecture course. After the "Wikipedia and Wiki Technologies" course in Plovdiv University, now the topic of Wikipedia is introduced in the "New Media and Participatory Culture" lecture course for the students in "European Studies" major in Sofia University, read by the prominent media law expert Prof. Nelly Ognyanova.

The lecture course aims to present the new media - blogs, social networks and new interactive forms of information dissemination and communication. Traditional and new media are compared in search of answers to the questions about the democratization of media in the digital society, about new media as instruments of civil participation, as well as regarding their performance in their mission to inform society.

Every year, guest lecturers from the areas of traditional and new media, journalism and creative writing are invited to take part: professor on cultural anthropology Prof. Ivaylo Ditchev, writers Georgi Gospodinov and Marin Bodakov, journalist Polina Paunova.

In the 2014/2015 edition of the course, the invited guest lecturer is Vassia Atanassova, PhD (User:Spiritia), administrator of the Bulgarian Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons, and she will be assisted by Wikipedia editor Petar Galev, who is a PhD student of Prof. Ognyanova. Their aim will be to teach students of the specifics of Wikipedia and its place and role within the ecosystem of new participatory forms of media, of sharing knowledge as a way to live and consume media content, as well as the critical thinking needed to survive in the jungle of web information. Students will be given the chance to get thorough hands-on experience by writing articles in Wikipedia, by contributing with freely licensed illustrative content, as well as with investigations of the use and appearance of Wikipedia in news, court cases or academic studies in Bulgaria.

Read more about the educational Wikimedia projects in Bulgaria here.

By Vassia Atanassova, Ph.D. (Bulgarian Wikipedia)

Snippet: Bulgarian telecommunications professors learn about the network aspects of Wikipedia

Wikipedia is a network of knowledge.

On October 13, 2014, a 3-hour lecture was given to faculty from the College of Telecommunications and Post in Sofia, discussing various issues related to Wikipedia and wikis. In Bulgaria, this probably was the first lecture dedicated to Wikipedia, which was especially targeted to teachers, rather than students. The lecture, titled "Network Aspects of Wikipedia," read by Vassia Atanassova, Ph.D., is part of a stream of professional development lectures under the heading of "Abstract Networks", which researchers from the Institute of Mathematics and Informatics and other institutes of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences are delivering to the CTP.

The aim of the lecture was to reveal the philosophy and technology of Wikipedia: Wikipedia as a hyperlinked and referenced network of knowledge, free resources and language versions, as well as a network community of readers, volunteering contributors, software developers. It was discussed as a socio-technical system, where interesting phenomena of synergy and stigmergy take place, and help changing the landscape of the Internet.

Wikipedia and its sister projects were also presented in the context of traditional and new media, and special attention was paid to the controversies of usage of Wikipedia in the classroom. The meeting was on the crossing point of Wikipedia and higher education and the discussion covered all the pros and cons, all the whethers, whens and how tos of using Wikipedia and wikis in educational context.

By Nimrod Rapaport (Wikimedia Israel) and Danny Waks (Wikimedia Israel)

Snippet: 9th grade students in Be'er Sheva, Israel write Wikipedia articles about their city and region to strengthen their sense of belonging and responsibility.

Wikimedia Israel volunteer Nimrod Rapaport teaches 9th grade students about Wikipedia as part of the Be'er Sheva Educational Initiative.


About a year ago, a Wikipedian who works in the Be'er Sheva municipality proposed an ambitious educational project: to encourage promising 9th grade students from Be’er Sheva to write articles about the city and its surrounding areas. The goal of the project was to strengthen the students’ sense of belonging and responsibility for their city. To achieve this, the project aimed to create articles about Be'er Sheva. Our partners were the Municipal Education Director, the Supervisor for Hebrew Studies at the Ministry of Education, the Executive Director of Wikimedia Israel, the senior teachers from all of the secondary schools in the city, and two senior Wikipedians. The pilot ran from September 2013 through June 2014. The first year of the project has concluded, and we are happy to share our conclusions.


  • Students: 350 excelling/advanced students.
  • Classes: 10 9th grade classes taken from all Be’er Sheva secondary schools.
  • Workshops: 12 lectures and editing workshops.
  • Articles: 25 articles + 10 drafts ready for the mainspace.



  • A meeting of a steering committee to green-light the project and its integration within the city’s education system.
  • The creation of lessons plans for the Wikipedia project, in accordance with material taught in the 9th grade classes participating in the project.
  • A workshop and lecture for the teachers of the participating classes.
  • The creation of a portal in the Hebrew Wikipedia.
  • An introductory lecture on Wikipedia to all classes participating in the project (separate lectures were held for each class).
  • Selection of subjects for articles, subject to approval by the Wikipedians leading the project.
  • Recruitment of volunteers to facilitate workshops and tutor pupils.
  • Twelve editing workshops.
  • The creation of articles in draft pages by the students, and follow-up by the Wikipedians leading the project.
  • Follow-up meetings with students, according to need.
  • Uploading most of the articles to the mainspace.


  • Collaboration with the local education department is essential.
  • Adjusting the project's lesson plans to the current material was crucial. Editing on Wikipedia did not come across as just another school chore, and the concurring syllabus made the work easier and more fruitful for both teachers and students.
  • The teachers in our projects underwent a four-hour lecture on Wikipedia and a short crash-course editing workshop. We believe that preparing teachers prior to their work with the students should be more thorough. Teachers are crucial to the project’s success, and it is important that their knowledge of Wikipedia goes beyond the scope of the average user (talk pages, view history, categories, etc.). Though, in our opinion, it is not necessary that they learn to edit articles.
  • Create a schedule and adhere to it. We were not always on schedule this last year, and consequently, we have failed to reach our goal of 40 articles.
  • Students’ enthusiasm: students must feel that they contribute to the expansion of knowledge in a field they relate to by writing articles, and that many people will eventually read the content they have created.
  • Students with the potential and will to continue editing Wikipedia should be identified, and a volunteer assigned to follow-up and encourage future Wikipedia work.
  • Students who excel in the project should be given the option to tutor others in the following school year.
  • Two volunteers led and managed the project, but the amount of work to be done during the project is substantial – coordinating with the different schools, editing articles, facilitating the workshops and participating in school activities. Ways must be found to ease the volunteers’ workload, and we would welcome any suggestions.

Visit the WikiProject portal on Hebrew Wikipedia.

Read our presentation proposal for Wikimania 2014.

Read more about the Wikipedia Education Program in Israel here.

By Leigh Thelmadatter (Tec de Monterrey/Wiki Learning)

Snippet: Eight classes, video documentation, over 1000 photos and a photo contest at Tec de Monterrey

Group photo of the intermediate English class taught by Jlkmaestra

During the past month, seven clases at Tec de Monterrey, Mexico City Campus have begun projects, mostly translation of articles from English to Spanish and photography. These classes range from 2 at the intermediate level (Remedial III) to advanced (Sello A). Their work is being documented both at the education extension in es wiki here] and in Outreach Wiki here as the education extension is project-specific. One course in advanced German, Alemán IV (taught by JesúsHerreradelRío), has completed a translation assignment, the first from German to Spanish at the school. This was a little more time consuming than the usual English-Spanish translations as does not recognized much of the German-language coding (such as for references and images) and it was necessary to change these manually.

Servicio social Wikipedian Xiuhcoatl Xiuhuitl helps a primary school teacher correct a Wikipedia article

On September 26, a basic training session was held on campus for primary school teachers. This is part of the Mati Wiki project, which has the aim of expanding a current program in the use of smart phones for primary school mathematics to other activities. The pilot program will select ten students from each of three primary schools to write articles and otherwise document the neighborhoods where the schools are found. The purpose of this training session was to familiarize teachers with how to get involved with Wikipedia and provide support to participating students.

Tec de Monterrey has approved a project to start video documenting Wiki projects at the school. This has begun with the filming of the aforementioned German class and training for primary school teachers as well as a communications class taught by Paula Ricaurte.

The community service (servicio social) students working with Wikipedia this semester have so far completed over 70 articles in and have uploaded over 1,000 photographs to Commons.

The third annual "Día de Muertos Estilo Wiki" (Day of the Dead Wiki Style) is scheduled to run from Oct 20 to November 8. Day of the Dead is an important cultural tradition in Mexico, with the aim of honoring the dead and ancestors. The aim of the contest is not only to document how it is observed in its numerous variations but also to encourage students and professors to consider Wikimedia Commons and Wikipedia as learning platforms for class projects. This year, the contest as been expanded from Campus Ciudad de México to two others in the metropolitan area, Campus Santa Fe and Campus Estado de México, supported by local campus libraries whose staff received formal Commons training on Oct 16 to support participating students. The contest rules are here (in Spanish)

Read more about the Wikipedia Education Program at the Tec de Monterrey here.

By Mariona Aragay, (Amical Wikimedia)

Snippet: Catalan Wikipedia becomes the 13th Wikipedia to enable the Education Program MediaWiki extension.

Education Program Extension on

In September 2014, the Education Program Extension was enabled on Catalan Wikipedia. The Education Program Extension was developed by the Wikimedia Foundation to assist educators and Wikimedians in their joint efforts to support classes of students editing articles on Wikipedia. It is currently enabled on 15 Wikimedia projects: 13 language versions of Wikipedia and on 2 other Wikimedia projects, including English Wikinews and German Wikiversity.

During the summertime, Catalan editors agreed to install the extension and on September 27 the official request was made. The extension is currently being translated and adjusted by the Catalan editors community, who are eager to put it to use as soon as possible. Educational programs are currently growing fast at the Catalan Wikipedia, as more Universities join the EduWiki projects and start new others. Thus, this newly-enabled tool is hoped to be of help in order in consolidating Educational Programs in the Catalan region.

Read more about the educational Wikimedia projects in Catalonia here.

By Yuriy Bulka (Wikimedia Ukraine)

Snippet: Ukrainian Wikipedia becomes the 12th Wikipedia to enable the Education Program MediaWiki extension.

Education Program Extension on

In May 2014, Ukrainian Wikipedia joined the Education Program Extension-enabled wikis after having an on-wiki discussion resulting in a request to enable the extension, which was already fully translated into Ukrainian by a dedicated Wikipedian prior to the request. The Education Program Extension was developed by the Wikimedia Foundation to assist educators and Wikimedians in their joint efforts to support classes of students editing articles on Wikipedia. It is currently enabled on 15 Wikimedia projects: 13 language versions of Wikipedia and on 2 other Wikimedia projects, including English Wikinews and German Wikiversity.

Currently, the extension is not yet actively used by educators in Ukraine as Ukrainian Wikipedia community prepares documentation and on-wiki infrastructure, however, with the start of the semester several introductory wiki-trainings have been held in Lviv and Kyiv, and more are planned. In the past, Wikimedia Ukraine has signed agreements with several Ukrainian universities (including Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University, Kyiv Polytechnic Institute, Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute and others), however Wikimedians in Ukraine were struggling in maintaining the growth of the program. Recently, new contacts were established and the idea of the Wikipedia Education Program in Ukraine is met with enthusiasm among educators very often. Thus, the WEP community in Ukraine hopes to use the Education Program Extension to boost the program in Ukraine in the following years.

Read more about the educational Wikimedia projects in Ukraine here.

By Romaine

Snippet: Dutch Wikipedia becomes the 11th Wikipedia to enable the Education Program MediaWiki extension.

Education Program Extension on

In March 2014, the Education Program Extension was installed on Dutch Wikipedia. The Education Program Extension was developed by the Wikimedia Foundation to assist educators and Wikimedians in their joint efforts to support classes of students editing articles on Wikipedia. It is currently enabled on 15 Wikimedia projects: 13 language versions of Wikipedia and on 2 other Wikimedia projects, including English Wikinews and German Wikiversity.

This extension can be used for all kinds of courses, varying from short event like edit-a-thons to longer academic courses. Several volunteers are currently writing documentation for future users of the extension and their specific roles (teacher, student, etc.). Currently Wikimedia Netherlands is studying how to set up a programme together with educational institutions. In the meanwhile, the extension is already been used for edit-a-thons.

Read more about the Wikipedia Education Program in the Netherlands here.

By María Cruz (Learning & Evaluation team, Wikimedia Foundation)

Snippet: WMF data collection continues through November 3. Education program leaders urged to report program impacts.

Help us build a bird's eye view of Wikimedia programs.

The Learning & Evaluation team started the data collection initiative last year, with the goal of gathering data about Wikimedia programs. That time, 60 program leaders from 30 different countries reported their program's inputs, outputs and outcomes. Of those 60 reports, only 6 reports were from education programs.

With your help, we can build a bird's eye view of the movement's programs and projects, understand what works best for each aim, and help grow the awesome! Last year, our team put together the Program Report (beta). For this round, we have increased the number of programs to include GLAM initiatives and Wiki Loves Monuments as well.

If you coordinated a program or project from September 1, 2013, to September 30, 2014, you can submit your program's data to this II Round. You can first preview the reporting items on this doc, and when you are ready, fill in the reporting collector by clicking here.

If you have already reported on your programs, or have been collecting data in a different way, we can have you share in another format. Reach out to us at, or leave a message on my talk page.

Bear in mind that deadlines are already close! Data submissions for Education Programs are due by November 3rd. Please review all deadlines (starting October 20) in the Announcement in the News & Events section of the Evaluation portal on Meta wiki.

Help us showcase your efforts to promote Wikimedia! Submit your data today!

Read more about Learning and Evaulation here.

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales visits school in Wembley

Jimmy Wales.

A report of Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales's visit to a secondary school in Wembley in the United Kingdom to speak to students about the secret of his success (failure) and the impact of technology including Wikipedia in education. Read the full article here.

Wikipedia Emerges as Trusted Internet Source for Ebola Information

Dr. James Heilman

The New York Times reports that in recent years Wikipedia has become a more reliable source for information about timely medical topics like Ebola. Dr. James Heilman, who leads Wikiproject Medicine, explains how volunteers safeguard the most important public health articles. This fall, those volunteers will be joined by fourth-year medical students at the University of California, San Francisco, who will help develop articles about infectious diseases. Read the full article here.

Wikipedia, a Professor's Best Friend


In the Chronicle of Higher Education, Polish Professor Dariusz Jemielniak explains why he encourages his students to edit and develop Wikipedia and why he suggests that academics engage with the site as authors as well. Read the full article here.

Smart-Wikipedia: Promoting further learning


Wikimedia Philippines, the Wikimedia Foundation, and Smart Communications have teamed up to train teachers throughout the country how to use Wikipedia in the classroom as part of their "Tap and Learn: Tablets for Education" program. Read the full article here.

Wikipedia grows up on college campuses


Radio talk show host in California Bruce Maiman writes in the Sacramento Bee talking about how college students are changing how Wikipedia develops. Included are interviews with Diana Strassmann, a Rice University professor and chairwoman of the Wiki Education Foundation, LiAnna Davis, also of the Wiki Education Foundation, and Tighe Flanagan, of the Wikimedia Foundation's Wikipedia Education Program. Read the full article here.

Get to Know the Wiki Education Foundation


The New Media Consortium reviews the history of the Wiki Education Foundation, their recent contributions to Wikimania London, and their support for classroom projects in the United States and Canada. Read the full article here.

WikiEducation: fear it or love it?


In Education Today, Dr. Nicola Davies explores the value for students learning how to write and edit a Wikipedia article by undertaking the Wikipedia Education Program's 12-week Syllabus in Australia. Read the full article here.