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Education Program technical update, February 2014
We've started working on "editor campaigns", a system that we expect will eventually be able to replace our current Education Program extension (and be useful for many other purposes as well). The early work with that project will focus on a system for signup up new editors for editing campaigns (such as courses, but also edit-a-thons, Wiki Loves Monuments, etc.). Because of that, progress will be slow on the current course page system. However, we have several improvements that should be available within the next few weeks.
- Anyone can edit the main text of course pages
As part of the effort to make course pages behave more like regular wiki pages, we've enabled editing of course pages by anyone. Users who currently have the right to edit courses will have access to all the fields (so that they can change the start/end dates, and change the enrollment token). Users who currently cannot edit courses will be able to edit only the "page text" portion. This change should take effect on 2014-02-27.
- Simplified course editing interface
We've considerably simplified the interface for editing course pages, removing the options to rename courses. Changing the title of a course would also move the course page, creating confusion and leading to a number of bugs. Several other parts of the course editing interface were not very useful, so we've removed them to make it easier on newcomers. This change should take effect on 2014-02-27.
- Additional Notifications
Two students participating in the Facebook Open Academy mentorship program are currently working on additional Notifications for course pages. For the first of these, users will be notified whenever someone else adds them to a course.
Education Program technical update, April 2014
Since the last update, development of the editor campaigns project has been continuing, and it's almost at the point that it will be useful to users running edit-a-thons and other non-course outreach events. (If you are planning such an event soon and would like to beta test it for tracking the contributions of newcomers, get it touch.) In the meantime, we've made a few small improvements and bug fixes to the Education Program extension:
- Default course end date
The default end date for courses is now approximately six months in the future, instead of immediately. This will prevent the common problem where a user creates a new course page but does change the default dates, resulting in a course that is immediately considered "ended" and thus cannot be enrolled in.
- Notifications when you get added to a course
Whenever a user gets added to a course by someone else, they will now receive a Notification.
- Disabling individual student profiles
The student profile special page (Special:Student/Username, not to be confused with Special:Students) is a page that lists the courses a student editor is enrolled in, and is also supposed to list the articles that user is working on. However, the list of articles can include incorrect data in cases where an instructor or volunteer assigned the articles to the student editor. These profiles are being removed from the extension altogether. This change should go into effect Thursday, May 1. (Logs are still available to find out which courses a user is enrolled in.)
- Article edit notifications for students coming soon
A nearly complete patch from Facebook Open Academy student Jeff Lloyd will add a new type of Notification: students will be alerted to edits made by others to the article(s) they are assigned (as well as the corresponding talk pages). Expect to see this feature within the next several weeks.
- Duplicate courses and API deletion
Bugs in the course page creation process (now fixed) led in some cases to duplicate listings for the same course at Special:Courses. This happens when the same course page had two (or more) different course ID numbers. It is possible to clean up such duplicate entries using by making calls to the API. I've documented this process and written a Python script for it.
Hi, I see you may be having some issues with reference formatting e.g. 1. They can be painful. Here are links to a few tools that might help: Help:Citation_tools. I tend to use the "Cite" option at the top of the page I'm editing. From "Templates" select "cite journal", drop a Pubmed ID into the correct field and hit the magnifying glass. All the fields should be automatically filled for you, hit "Insert" and you're done. I hope this helps! --Paul (talk) 22:36, 29 June 2014 (UTC)
- Thanks, Paul! I have used that template in the past, but stupidly forgot that clicking the magnifying glass was the secret to filling in the empty fields, so I used the citation expander tool instead, which I had never used before. When it had not automatically completed the citation the next day, I pushed it to the head of the queue, but wasn't sure if it would work. I was also a little confused by the formatting of most of the refs in this article in parentheses instead of superscripts. I found a formatting note somewhere indicating that either is acceptable (which I did not know), but articles should not be mixed. It was late and I was tired and as a less experience editor, I was hoping someone who might be faster and care more might fix it later, or figured I would get back to it eventually. Best, Biolprof (talk) 23:46, 29 June 2014 (UTC)
- Fair enough. I completely understand. The mixed reference formatting explains why the ref you added is #1. Which I thought was odd at the time. Damned if I want to sort that mess out. I can leave that for my esteemed lncRNA colleagues on the other side of the Tasman, or even better, a bot.--Paul (talk) 01:10, 1 July 2014 (UTC)