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About this research project[edit]

This research project is a joint effort between the Information Systems Department and the Connell School of Nursing at Boston College. We are seeking to understand the collaborative processes that create medical knowledge on Wikipedia. Medical information on Wikipedia is becoming more a critical source of public health knowledge (for instance, we found that the Wikipedia article is in the top 3 Google search search results for medical terms 90% of the time). As one of the top contributors to medical information on Wikipedia, your responses will help us better understand these processes.

Other Data Being Used[edit]

We are focusing in detail on the content and collaboration of several articles, including the edit history and the talk pages of each. We have also assembled a broader sample of 300 medical articles and the collaborative data regarding each. Your responses here will be used to help us better understand this data and provide valuable insight into collaboration on Wikipedia.


In order to protect your privacy, please do not respond on this page. Please cut and paste this survey into an email and send to Please be honest, your privacy and confidentiality will be carefully protected. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

Please feel free to respond with as much or as little information as you would like. I value your input.

Special Note: Please remember that participation in this survey is entirely voluntary. If you would like to respond but you are uncomfortable communicating by email, please leave a message on my talk page and we can come up with an alternative solution.

  1. What is your Wikipedia user name? Optional: please also include any demographic information you are comfortable sharing (e.g. age, sex, nationality).
  2. How much time per week do you spend contributing (e.g. editing articles, discussion pages, user talk pages, monitoring contributions) a) to Wikipedia in general b) to medical and health-related articles
  3. Do you have any formal training in healthcare? If so, what? Do you have any informal training or experience (e.g. a patient with a condition, a drug rep, an avid reader)?
  4. Why do you contribute to Wikipedia? Why do you contribute to medical articles in general?
  5. Why do you contribute to the specific medical articles you have?
  6. Do you tend to collaborate with any particular editors? If so, how do those relationships shape your editorial activity?
  7. Does the editorial process behind medical articles differ from the editorial process of other Wikipedia articles? If so, how?
  8. In your opinion, what factors are most closely associated with the development of a quality article? Which factors most detract from article quality?
  9. Is there anything else about the creation of health-related information on Wikipedia that you would like to add?

In Return[edit]

Please let me know if you would like an advance copy of our findings when our study is complete.