Friday, March 09, 2007

The Guardian: Students marked on writing in Wikipedia

From The Guardian:

"Wikipedia - banned by some academics as a source for student essays - has been made compulsory reading (and writing) for a new course at the University of East Anglia. Students are assessed on editing and writing articles on Middle East politics for the online encyclopaedia, which is open to contributions from anyone. Nicola Pratt, a lecturer in international relations, said she used to be "one of the disgruntled crown of academics who berate students for using Wikipedia in their essays" but is now convinced it can be a great opportunity for students to see at first hand how knowledge is produced."

Comment: I try not to make a point of tooting my own horn, but I've given my online journalism students the option to earn up to 10 points of extra credit toward their final grade by finding and fixing factual errors on Wikipedia - one point per error. I'd love to know how Dr. Pratt got a story written about this...

Enough whining though - I think it's a great idea, particularly given the sometimes irrational enmity most professors feel toward Wikipedia.