Learning patterns/Help students and educators understand community rules and norms

A learning pattern forEducation
Help students and educators understand rules and norms
problemStudent and educator user pages, articles, edits or content are being deleted.
solutionHelp students and educators understand and follow community policies and guidelines.
creatorKHarold (WMF)
created on20 December, 2014

What problem does this solve? edit

Although there are relatively few policies and guidelines for contributing to Wikimedia project, there are many unwritten rules and norms that experienced editors expect others to follow. Students and educators may not realize that they are violating community rules and norms when they are learning to edit, and as a result, their contributions, edits, articles and user pages may get deleted.

What is the solution? edit

Helping students and educators understand community rules and norms will help them avoid making mistakes that the community will revert or delete. Make sure to discuss community rules norms (and why they matter) with both students and educators.

Guidelines for students edit

  • Create an account.
  • Make a user page and introduce yourself. Add a babel box to indicate which languages you speak and how proficiently, especially if you plan to translate content.
  • Start by making a few small edits at first.
  • Avoid editing large blocks of text, and instead work in small sections.
  • Do not copy and paste and be careful about close paraphrasing.
  • Post a comment on the talk page of an article you plan to edit, introducing yourself and noting that you plan to begin adding content.

Guidelines for educators edit

  • Help educators create an appropriate userpage. For example, a user page should not look like a CV or resume, try sharing professional and personal interests using infoboxes.
  • Encourage educators to complete an assignment similar to what they will assign students to do.
    • This will give educators an opportunity to learn about challenges their students might encounter so that they are better prepared to assist them.
    • The community may be more receptive to educators who request course administrator rights if the educator can demonstrate that they have experience contributing to Wikimedia projects.

General considerations edit

  • Consider adding basic rules and templates to the course page or portal that students and educators will visit frequently.
  • If educator user pages are getting deleted frequently, provide a template or standard set of text to use. They can make changes after a few days. This may help avoid deletion because very new user accounts get more scrutiny than those that have been online for awhile.
  • It is a good idea to add a template to student user pages that links to the course page so that other editors know how best to help.

When to use edit

See also edit

Education Toolkit Learning Pattern
This learning pattern is part of the Education Program Toolkit.
Go to the toolkit.

Related patterns edit

External links edit

References edit