Guidelines for Effective Wiki-Editing

These are the basic wiki instructions to students and teachers on NetGen. Thought this would be helpful for some of you.

Here are some notes to students and teachers for the most common questions about wikis.

If you find a mistake:
If I have typos, please feel free to fix them.

Where they are:
All of them are linked to this page –
The main topics are on the left.

How editing works:
We write the instructions in italics and ask them to delete it.

If you delete it, how can everyone see the instructions?
This FORCES the students to learn how ot use history — just go to the history tab and look at the 1st copy of the page – the instructions are THERE. This forces them to learn about instructions and the power of the wiki.

What goes on the wiki and what in the discussion tab?

The wiki page should always be in FINAL form – so discussions go on the discussion tab – talking about the page. I use Wikipedia to show how this works. They should look for their expert advisors here as well.

How do they keep up with their wiki edits and discussions?

We use igoogle and they subscribe to the discussions and wiki edits for their main page and sub wiki – to find it, go to the notify me tab of the page. This helps them keep up with things.

When can they start?


What are wiki wars?

When students edit simultaneously they will delete one another's work. There is a warning that let's them know when someone else is editing, but sometimes it will happen erroneously if another person clicked “edit” and then left the page by clicking cancel. The wiki editor saves the iunedited page in the “cache” and tells others that someone is editing when they aren't.

Can wiki wars be prevented?

The #1 reason for wiki wars is that students do not click “discard” when opening a page. In the example listed above, there is a copy in the cache of your computer when you clicked edit and then clicked cancel – it still saved a copy. So, if you did this 3 days a go, and you don't click Discard you lose 3 days of work!! So, click Discard and there is no problem.

How do I get back my work?
No problem! If someone deletes your work, go in the history and copy your work out (just turn off change highlighting when you do) and paste it back into the current document. Try not just to revert back — as that perpetuates the wiki war. Feel free to leave a kindly worded message to the person who has not discarded the previous draft. Do not let things escalate — sometimes others just dont' know and they are learning!!!
We have a few teachers who need to sign up for the teams. Get into the google doc ASAP as we need to publish this.

A simulpost from NetGenEd Ning.

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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1 comment

Mr Macoun February 23, 2009 - 8:55 pm

Thanks Vicki. I am just doing a wiki editing assignment with my students and these notes are just what I needed.

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