Education/Newsletter/August 2012/Reaching out to different target groups in Germany

by Elly Köpf

Starting this year, Wikimedia Germany has bundled its activities in education in a new sector, called "education and knowledge". The aim is to reach out to everybody who wants to know about Wikipedia. For this work we built up a network of speakers (active Wikipedians and new editors) who offer Workshops and give personal feedback. Everybody can ask for support and is supported by material, personal consulting or a workshop.

On top of the sector we are currently running three programs: In "Silberwissen", which I presented with three other chapters at Wikimania, we work to motivate seniors (60+ years of age) to edit Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons. In the school project "Wikipedia macht Schule," we teach teachers how Wikipedia works and what they should know about it. Currently we are working also on teaching material to give away.

The third pilot project, the "Hochschulprogramm" focuses on professors in universities. We train them before the semester in editing and communicating in Wikipedia and give them a personal assistant from whom they can ask for help during the semester. The professors then edit in class with the students.

The new sector is really helping us to be flexible in the work and to be addressable to different groups (for example women).

We have had several experiences with our work we would love to share with other chapters or community members. I am looking forward to the success of the education portal.