Fall 2010 courses kick off
We've lined up nine professors at eight universities to teach eleven courses in the fall. And the list keeps growing! Already, professors from Georgetown University, George Mason University, George Washington University, Harvard University, Indiana University, Lehigh University, Syracuse University, and the University of California at Berkeley have introduced Wikipedia into their classrooms through the Public Policy Initiative. Check out the course page of WikiProject: United States Public Policy for more details on how professors are incorporating Wikipedia into their curriculum this fall.
Wikipedia Campus Ambassadors trained
As part of the Public Policy Initiative, we've trained a first batch of Campus Ambassadors to assist professors in the classroom at our participating universities. Campus Ambassadors are students, teaching and learning staff, and area Wikipedians who are volunteering to spend 2-3 hours a week helping students in the courses learn the basics of Wikipedia. (A counterpart, the Online Ambassadors, are also helping students virtually.) The Wikimedia Foundation brought all Campus Ambassadors together for three days of training in Washington, D.C. Check out a video from the training for more information on Campus Ambassadors.
New assessment debuts
The Public Policy Initiative's research analyst, Amy Roth, is hard at work on three different article assessment plans to quantify whether and how we have improved the quality of articles on Wikipedia through the Public Policy Initiative. First, we've debuted a weighted quality assessment system that adds facets needed for quantitative analysis. Second, Amy is running a metric assessment by compiling a team of policy experts and experienced Wikipedians who are volunteering to evaluate about 10 articles every two months; Amy will then compare the results to see how effective the metric is (Amy is looking for more policy experts; if you have an hour to help us every two months, please email her at firstname.lastname@example.org). Finally, we're hosting a brand new Article Feedback Tool which allows readers to rank articles in our project on a simple five-star rating system on the areas of sourcing, neutrality, completeness, and readability. Learn more about our rating systems in the Wikipedia Signpost.
Inside Higher Ed covers the initiative
One of the top educational news sites covered the work we're doing through the Public Policy Initiative. Inside Higher Ed spoke with the Wikimedia Foundation, participating professors, and interested parties throughout academia, and the resulting article does a great job of explaining what we're doing. Take a few minutes to read "Wikipedia for Credit".