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The Americas, like most parts of the world, would not exist as we know them had it not been for the writings and journeys of centuries of travelers; writing and travel have been closely connected. The twin goals of this class are to understand the role of travel writing in shaping the history of the hemisphere, and to understand the historical contexts and influences on various forms of travel writing. From European conquest and colonization to the African slave trade through the growth of tourism and migration, human mobility is perhaps the most significant common denominator connecting the intertwined histories of North and South America. We will read a wide variety of accounts describing travel to or through the hemisphere, as well as critical scholarship that helps us shed new analytical light on those primary sources. Ultimately, the course will allow students to contribute to those critical understandings on Wikipedia.
Complete the introductory training modules. During this training, you will make edits in a sandbox and learn the basic rules of Wikipedia.
Create a User page.
To practice editing and communicating on Wikipedia, introduce yourself to another student on their user talk page.
Explore topics related to your topic area to get a feel for how Wikipedia is organized. What areas seem to be missing? As you explore, make a mental note of articles that seem like good candidates for improvement.
All students have Wikipedia user accounts and are listed on the course page.
Tuesday, 8 March 2016 | Thursday, 10 March 2016
In class - Exploring the topic area
Be prepared to discuss some of your observations about Wikipedia articles in your topic area that are missing or could use improvement.
Supplementary training: [[../../../training/students/sources|Sources and Citations]]
Assignment - Add to an article
Add 1–2 sentences of new information, backed up with a citation to an appropriate source, to a Wikipedia article related to the class.
Tuesday, 22 March 2016 | Thursday, 24 March 2016
Assignment - Choosing your article
Research and list 3–5 articles on your Wikipedia user page that you will consider working on as your main project. Look at the talk page for existing topics for a sense of who else is working on it and what they're doing. Describe your choices to your instructor for feedback.
In class - Discuss the article topics
Discuss the topics students will be working on, and determine strategies for researching and writing about them.
Supplementary training: [[../../../training/students/sandboxes|Sandboxes and Mainspace]]
Assignment - Finalize your topic and start researching
Select an article to work on, removing the rest from your user page. Add your topic on the course page.
Compile a bibliography of relevant, reliable sources and post it to the talk page of the article you are working on. Begin reading the sources. Make sure to check in on the talk page (or watchlist) to see if anyone has advice on your bibliography.
Tuesday, 29 March 2016 | Thursday, 31 March 2016
Assignment - Drafting starter articles - FIRST DRAFT DUE MARCH 22
If you are starting a new article, write a 3–4 paragraph summary version of your article—with citations—in your Wikipedia sandbox. If you are improving an existing article, create a detailed outline reflecting your proposed changes, and post this for community feedback, along with a brief description of your plans, on the article’s talk page. Make sure to check back on the talk page often and engage with any responses.
Begin working with classmates and other editors to polish your short starter article and fix any major issues.
Continue research in preparation for expanding your article.
All students have started editing articles or drafts on Wikipedia.
Tuesday, 5 April 2016 | Thursday, 7 April 2016
In class - Moving articles to mainspace
We'll discuss moving your article out of your sandboxes and into Wikipedia's main space.
A general reminder: Don't panic if your contribution disappears, and don't try to force it back in.
Check to see if there is an explanation of the edit on the article's talk page. If not, (politely) ask why it was removed.
Contact your instructor or Wikipedia Content Expert and let them know.
If you are expanding an existing article, copy your edit into the article. If you are making many small edits, save after each edit before you make the next one. Do NOT paste over the entire existing article, or large sections of the existing article.
If you are creating a new article, do NOT copy and paste your text, or there will be no record of your work history. Follow the instructions in the "Moving out of your sandbox" handout.
Begin expanding your article into a comprehensive treatment of the topic.
Tuesday, 12 April 2016 | Thursday, 14 April 2016
In class - Building articles
Demo uploading images and adding images to articles.
Select a classmates’ article that you will peer review and copyedit. On the table at the bottom of this course page, add your username next to the article you will peer review. (You don’t need to start reviewing yet.)
Tuesday, 19 April 2016 | Thursday, 21 April 2016
In class - Group suggestions
As a group, offer suggestions for improving one or two other students' articles, based on your ideas of what makes a solid encyclopedia article.