Grants:IEG/Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool

statusnot selected
Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool
summaryIdentify effective instructional strategies that can leverage Wikipedia in education
targetEnglish and indic languages
strategic priorityimprove quality
amount$21875 = INR1465625
created on14:03, 15 March 2016 (UTC)

Project idea


What is the problem you're trying to solve?


Main RQ1

  • How does improvement in Knowledge Building Skills affect the "quality of articles" in Wikipedia?

Main RQ2

  • How does the engagement of student with Wikipedia affect their "Knowledge Building Skills"?


  • What are the different types of engagement with Wikipedia among the target students?
  • How does each engagement strategy affect knowledge building?

Main RQ3

  • What are effective instructional strategies that can be used to leverage Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool for developing Knowledge Building Skills?


  • What are the possible instructional strategies that could be integrated with Wikipedia?
  • How effective are these strategies in terms of developing "Knowledge Building Skills" of students?

Prior Work


I ran a pilot using Wikipedia in teacher trainee education. Details here The research questions mentioned in section 1.3 are still open not only in the same context but also other contexts like undergraduate education. Due to the pilot nature of the project mentioned in the link, a lot of variables were tweaked to obtain positive results. However, the effectiveness and a specific strategy that can be replicated are still missing. I would like to conduct experimental studies to fill this gap

What is your solution?

  • Identify existing strategies that are present in
  • Analyse their match in the current context with respect to knowledge building skills
  • Discuss with online teaching experts on relevant strategies for knowledge building

Since I work in a University, I have access to a large student population and will create experimental design based studies in association with other faculty members to identify learning strategies that will enable the creation of high quality Wikipedia articles while leveraging Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool that will enable collaboration and a lively learning environment. This will need the efforts of several researchers and in-house trainers. The researchers will design the experiments. They will then train the teachers in those strategies who will then implement them. The training of teachers is important so that researcher bias is controlled for. Teacher training will also ensure sustainability of the project cause these teachers will carry forward the ideas to whichever institution they go to in the future.

Project goals

  • Increase contributors to specific domains
  • Improve quality of contributions by identifying contextually effective processes
  • Integrate contribution to Wikipedia into the curriculum

Project plan



  • Identify specific domains and relevant instructional strategies
  • Design experiments to test effectiveness
  • Create publishable papers for open access


  • Lead researcher - $1000 x 6 months = $6000
  • Assistant researchers - $500 x 6 months x 3 people = $9000. // This amount may be added to the last item if individual assistant researchers cannot stay for the whole six months but rather as consultants
  • Low cost laptops - $105 per laptop x 30 laptops = $3150
  • project laptop - $1225 x 1 = $1225
  • Other administrative and logistic costs = $2500

I have not yet factored in losses due to wiring in the funds or relevant taxes. Will do this shortly

Community engagement


Acquiring qualitative feedback is being built into the research design. This will done post-treatment. The Indic Wikipedia community will be invited to provide feedback once the first set of pilots have been implemented. This will enable the experiments to be refined. The results will be published in a forum that is open access to ensure that the existing community has access to the data generated


  • Teacher training is a strong component that is being planned.
  • The University in question is already involved in contributing to local language Wikipedia. However, that project fails in pedagogy and needs support. Thus, this will enable both projects to become self-sustaining

Measures of success

  • Identification of at least 4 or more instructional strategies
  • solving the research questions that have been articulated in at least 2 new contexts

Get involved



  • vincentvikram - lead researcher - Researcher in educational technology - contributor to Wikipedia since 2007
  • Ajpinto42 - grantee - contributor to Wikipedia since 2007 - Registrar at Christ University, Bangalore - expert in digital societies

Community notification




Do you think this project should be selected for an Individual Engagement Grant? Please add your name and rationale for endorsing this project below! (Other constructive feedback is welcome on the discussion page).

  • User: vincentvikram is a veteran Wikipedian. He has made remarkable contributions to using Wikipedia in education. The outcomes from this project will hopefully help us to create and modify our strategies in education programs. I am endorsing this project. Netha Hussain (talk) 14:32, 15 March 2016 (UTC)
  • This would help in understanding how to integrate technology with the current education system in the most effective way. Adding to that advantage would be the increase in number of contributors to Wikipedia itself. Also, there seems to be a scope for an increase in articles in the local languages which is a much needed effort. Shashankmc (talk) 09:57, 20 March 2016 (UTC)
  • I was the part of pilot study that User:vincentvikram coducted. I have to point out that this was my first experience in construction valuable content to wikipedia. the process which we went through has helped me be a better researcher.This project would throw light on how next generation teachers like us will be able to use Wikipedia as a teaching strategy for knowledge construction. Ramyatalanki (talk) 11:28, 21 April 2016 (UTC)
  • Much of my understanding of educational techniques and strategies was built thanks to this study conducted by User:vincentvikram. The approach was a refreshing change to traditional learning methods. The learning process was completely constructive with elements of apprenticeship-learning, enabling us to have not just an in-depth understanding of concepts but also to have the clarity to envision how we can build this into our own classroom teaching experiences. With a combination of Vikram's experience, his contributions to the Wikipedia community and his visionary approach, this project is more than a safe bet to endorse! reshmiiyer (talk) 09:31, 26 April 2016 (UTC)
  • The value of this project is that there is a lack of research about what students gain in the classroom from editing wikipedia - most of the work has focused on what wikipedia gains, rather than the students (or teachers). Capturing what students learn in the classroom can really help to promote the education program in schools. I would be happy to support this project in any way that I can. --EGalvez (WMF) (talk)