Wikipedie:WikiProjekt Chráněná území/PřF UK/Report-en
This is a report summarizing evidences taken during cooperation between WikiProject Protected areas from Czech Wikipedia and students of Institute for Environmental Studies, Faculty of Science at the Charles University in Prague. This cooperation took place in winter semester 2011/2012. User:Chmee2 worked in collaboration for the side of Czech Wikipedia and Jirireif represented Institute for Environmental Studies.
30 students of last bachelor's degree were joined during this activity in writing of articles into Czech Wikipedia. This cooperation took place as part of taught subject (its exercise part respectively), in which students had to perform several task associated with protected areas in the Czech Republic (primary, two exceptions occurred, one from Finland, second from USA). Students for successful completion of defined tasks got credit and were admitted to the examination. Whole this concept was an experiment in Czech environment without previous testing.
Short summary – subject enjoyed high popularity among students based on the results of survey (more details below). Students positively evaluated its contribution to the development of their skills. Positive feedback was on work of "teachers", their feedback about articles on cs.wiki, need to visit protected area of interest and oral presentation in the class too. During presentation students had to defend their presentation, Wikipedia's article and demonstrate knowledge about described protected area. From the Wikipedia point of view, based on author of this report, cooperation appears to be a positive contribution for development of Czech Wikipedia, because 29 articles were extended and reached high level of quality (including references). The contribution also consists the fact that the participants familiarize themselves with the general functioning of Wikipedia, contributing to it and the question of copyright. Although the benefits of the new editors will probably be very low or even zero, it is necessary to highlight the fact that Wikipedia can probably gained a good reputation and understanding of educated people in the field of environmental protection in the future.
Cooperation was established as result of presentation of WikiProject Protected areas on Wikiconference hold in 2010, where Chmee2 gave a talk about this project. He was approached by PhD. student from Institute for Environmental Studies at Faculty of Science from Charles University in Prague after the talk. In the ensuing discussion revealed, that there will be opportunity for some form of closer cooperation between this WikiProject and this Institute. Later crystallized the idea that students from higher classes of Environmental protection might write articles about protected areas into Czech Wikipedia. Then e-mail communication took place between user:Chmee2, PhD. student and teacher Jirireif, which was interesting in such cooperation. Plan of future cooperation was outlined in this communication and we arranged a personal meeting. Chmee2 presented how Wikipedia works at this meeting, he presented his issue about cooperation and what might be a task of seminar part of class. We discussed the possibilities with user:Jirireif and also made a issue how to evaluate students. Large effort was placed to explain the history of articles and search-ability of the individual authors and copyright question. Also highlighted were the benefits for students from such cooperation (individual work, learn how to work with the literature, research work, a presentation in front of people. Task not so common yet for university education in the Czech Republic). Also, it was decided that students of last year of bachelors degree will be participants of this cooperation in winter semester. Shortly before they have to write bachelors work which is similar to principles of writing good articles in Wikipedia projects.
During the initial meeting it was suggested by the cooperating institution that students first wrote the article to an external text editor. Then the teacher subsequently been reviewed and approved or not approved for publication. Chmee2 argued that it is preferable to insert text directly into Wikipedia, because it is possible to use the power of community. Community will reviewed and checked the text directly and that the more students will meet with feedback. However this assumption was not valid because cooperation with this institute was lowly hit by interest of long wikieditors. On the other hand, need to published the text directly to Wikipedia led students to the fact prepare article as good as possible.
Acting parts agreed that best format will be requirement to visit protected sites in person (make photos for Wikimedia Commons and for presentation), write article into Wikipedia and make public presentation for class within max. 10 to 15 minutes. During this presentation students have to defend their presentation, knowledge and article about protected area. Chmee2 also offered to the students used a grant covering travel expenses hold by Wikimedia ČR.
How the collaboration took place[editovat]
Special subpage was created on Czech Wikipedia at the beginning of cooperation, in which was written the task of the seminar, sample articles (cs:Boubínský prales, cs:NPP Rovná, cs:Řežabinec a Řežabinecké tůně) and short help-desk with the most important wiki-code information (how to make wikilink, how to upload image and how to insert references).
The target of cooperation was extended articles about protected areas by choice of students. They might choice the article about protected area in the Czech Republic, however, on request of two students, also foreign protected areas were allowed (concretely on from Finland Přísná přírodní rezervace Kevo and second from Alaska, USA: Národní park Kobuk Valley. Students were instructed by the task of seminar in the start of semester and shortly instructed about Czech Wikipedia. Chmee2 introduced students inter alia the issue of copyright on the Czech Wikipedia. Similar cooperation in India failed because of mass copyright violation and we do not want finish with same result. Chmee2 warned students, that copy/paste will lead to failed in the task automatically without second chance. Chmee2 also explained how easy is to find copy/paste text via Google search tools and that several wikipedians on Czech Wikipedia actively looking for this violation. As the next step, introduction of the task occurred. Intentionally we do not defined the extent of article (as minimum number of "A4 pages"), but we said that article has to be complete with enough basic information. Students were also instructed that they might use grant by Wikimedia ČR for covering travel expenses (if the author of the report known not anyone from students used).
Important was also clearly explain to students the importance of the reference line and why it is not enough only insert list of books in literature section. Good is give example. If you write the article, where the list of 10 books is, someone else will want to verify a claim, he must read all 10 books. If the reference line indicated by the claim to a particular page, just one look there is enough and reader can decide on truth. At the end was left relatively long time for any discussion.
As first, students should to choose a location and write the choice on subpage on Wikipedia (for the reason that the teachers knew about their choice). Choice was on students. It was only recommended firstly look in the literature to find if there is enough sources for writing good article or not. After editing the subpage with choice they ideally should visit the locality and take photos. This documentation was intended to achieve two fundamental objectives. Firstly as the proof of visiting this locality by student. This is also good to realize how the site looks, what is its context in the surrounding countryside, what is danger for this site and etc. For this reason article was not write without knowledge of the site, students have idea how the locality looks like. Secondly, we received images for Wikimedia Commons for localities, which were not covered yet by images or just by low number of images.
Be followed by writing the article in Czech Wikipedia, however, this order was voluntary. The teachers offered to the students as motivation, that their article will be reviewed by them and students will received feedback. This feedback will be without impact of evaluation of the article in the end of semester. Review tried to show to the students, where they have to rework the article, what is wrong, what is missing and others. Students should try if their article is fine enough to obtain credit or not. This possibility was widely used by students and from the survey between students it was positively evaluated. Their will appreciated similar cooperation with teachers and feedback in other subjects too. Students have opportunity to try write a long comprehensive article using several resources, valuate literature and critically evaluated these. Generally say, they try pre-writing of bachelors work.
After writing the article should follow the presentation before the class ranging from 10 to 12 minutes using a computer and screen. Students should introduce their chosen locality to the class (where is it situated, facts about fauna and flora, subject to protection, tourist situation and so). Basically same format as is required in bachelors defend of the work by an expert committee from academics. They also have to answered questions from class and from teachers. Finally they received feedback about written article (and later this day Chmee2 wrote review in Czech Wikipedia to discussion page of the article).
Students were asked to fill out an anonymous questionnaire with eleven questions in the end of semester. These questions retrospectively reflect completed a seminar. Questionnaire was distributed in paper form and later send by email in electronic form. We received 17 responds from 30 students which were asked. Results of questionnaire are available in PDF file.
- List of all chosen articles - 30 articles have been improved together, 28 associated with Czech Republic, 1 with Finland and 1 with United States of America.
- Until now, one article was honored as Good article of the Czech Wikipedia (cs:Zábělá)
- huge amount of very above average articles (cs:Podolský profil, cs:Mohelenská hadcová step, cs:Obora v Uhříněvsi, cs:Křížová cesta (přírodní rezervace), cs:Hojkovské rašeliniště, cs:Lítožnice, cs:Baba - V bukách, cs:Velký Blaník (přírodní rezervace), cs:Pitkovická stráň, cs:Malý Blaník (přírodní rezervace), cs:Přísná přírodní rezervace Kevo, cs:Břestecká skála, cs:Ve Studeném, cs:Jizerskohorské bučiny and others)
- An active approach – keep space for discussion with students, working contact for on-line help, correcting articles in progress after students edits, helping them with wiki-code, giving advises about references and how to use them, giving feedback and supporting all necessary help. Also positively motivate them and be kind!
- Clearly and comprehensibly explain "rules of the game" in the beginning of presentation of their task (primary, no copy/paste of copyright material: images and text. If yes, explain that they will be strictly kicked from a course). Explain them that new text is checked by other wikipedist looking for copyright violation and their breach of copyright will be revealed soon. Cheating is not tolerate and will be strictly punished.
- Explain why is so important using references in each lines/paragraph/section, ideally use some example (for example. When you want to check one information, you exactly know, which source you have to check...)
- Positively motivate and explain to what specific things will be useful (line references is ground of scientific work)
- Keep enough space for discussion and questions from students after the task
- Write articles as examples for students. Link these, students will known what is their task and have issue what we would like to have as result. Also, it helps keep some similar appearance and level of articles. They can also use these as help if they do not know how to make something. We used as examples three articles Boubínský prales, NPP Rovná, Řežabinec a Řežabinecké tůně.
- Correct articles edit by students and systematically browse/check. Try to be in contact with students in the time of their editing, giving advices and praise them.
- Found articles and prepare some basic stub level. Students do not have to care about categories, infoboxes, interwikies and others. This is not necessary to know for newcomers and only is it unnecessarily confuses
- Official Wikipedia helpdesk cut to absolute minimum and found page with short and basic heldesk.
- Keep easy accessible contact to person giving help on Wikipedia.
- Warn them, that is better firstly make literature survey, if they are enough sources allowing to write an article. Give them time to chose the topic of their interest.
- Do not limit range of article (for example do not say 3 A4 pages...). Better define the article to be balanced, comprehensive and should include all basic information.
- Warn administrators that there will be several newcomers editing clearly defined range of articles. Ask them try to do not block them in the case of some babies mistakes. Better write to advising person on Wikipedia which will fix the problem with students directly.
- Give all chose articles to Watch list.
- Time-consuming activity for the coordinator from the Wikipedia. Chmee2 actively visited every week seminar with presentation of students (circa 1.5 hours per week), every week read and reviewed circa 5 new articles (assumption 2 to 4 hours per week) and corrected emerging articles (circa 2 hours per week).
- Also there is uncertainty about the outcome of the acquisition of new editors for Wikipedia. Students often stopped editing of Wikipedia after end of semester. Edition is associated only with effort to obtain credit and pass the exam.
- 30 localities were photographed and images were uploaded to Wikimedia Commons
- 28 quality articles with references
- Establishing of the cooperation with educational institution
- Obtaining a good example of one type of cooperation helping in future dealing with other institutions
- Extending awareness of copyright and Wikipedia among students. It might help in future years where these students will take jobs in public administration, etc.
From the subjective point of view of Chmee2, the cooperation is a very successful action, as the Czech Wikipedia was enriched to 30 photos of localities. In the case of 28 articles were obtained above average quality, properly using references and relatively well written. Several articles are high above-average standards of Czech Wikipedia (one was already included among the good articles of Czech Wikipedia). An active approach to students, despite its time-consuming, led to creation of good quality articles not partial stubs. Also, it was guaranteed to minimize the load of the community by fallowing corrections and recurring explanation of principal processes and principles of Wikipedia. It is hard to assumed in the time of writing this report, if some students/editors will continue editing Wikipedia in the future. However, Wikipedia receives awareness among educated people. Even though it is hard to measure success, we might expect that this positive feedback about Wikipedia may occur as easier access to various aspects for Wikipedia issues in the future. It is possible to estimate the part of students take up jobs in government or other organizations with which Wikipedia will in future act.
From students point of view based on results of survey, this subject was interesting for them, that they consider beneficial for their further development. Students may see how Wikipedia work, learn how to write search report, review process and using of sources. It seems from students feedback, that they would like to have similarly conceived class welcome in the future or in others classes too.
Wikipedia thus appears as a good platform for writing seminar works, provided that the work of students and watched them all from scratch explained. Assuming that the work of students is patrolled and all important is explained for them. In this case (according to Chmee2 opinion) positives overruled the possible negatives as copyrights problems and others.
Because of good results and positive feedback from students, it is preliminary agreed that such cooperation will take place again next academic year (winter semester 2012/2012) in the similar format.
In the case of question or uncertainties, please, contact Chmee2!