Grants:Programs/Wikimedia Community Fund/Research on effectiveness of Wikipedia in Education as a platform of improving the cognitive ability among students

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Research on effectiveness of Wikipedia in Education as a platform of improving the cognitive ability among students
In this study it is proposed to conduct research on the effectiveness of Wikipedia as a platform of learning. It will be a program with graduate degree students. Students will learn to edit, writing articles, features like templates in Wikipedia and a bit of Wikidata and using queries. Tests are planned in the beginning and at the end of the program to assess the cognitive skills of the students. Tutorials and videos to help educators on how to go about WEP with Kannada context to be generated.
start date1-Jan-2022
end date31-Dec-2022
budget (local currency)2,098,311 INR
budget (USD)27,989 USD
grant typeIndividual
grantees• Pavanaja

This is an automatically generated page based on the applicant's application on the Wikimedia Foundation's Grantee Portal on Fluxx.


What is the main objective of your proposal?

In this study it is proposed to conduct research on the effectiveness of Wikipedia as a platform of learning. It will be a program with graduate degree students. Students will learn to edit, writing articles, features like templates in Wikipedia and a bit of Wikidata and using queries. Tests are planned in the beginning and at the end of the program to assess the cognitive skills of the students. Tutorials and videos to help educators on how to go about WEP with Kannada context to be generated.

What are the main challenges you are trying to solve and your proposed solution?

The main purpose of education is to create a thinking human beings rather than walking encyclopedias. Over the years the education domain has systematically transformed itself from creating thinking pupils to producing bunch of people with lot of information but poor in the thought processes. Cognitive ability among the students need to be kindled and nurtured. Use of Wikipedia as a platform for learning has potential to improve this process, leading to impactful learning. In higher education, there is growing interest in using Wikipedia as a learning resource. Wikipedia can be used as an instructional resource as well. Most students use Wikipedia as a source of information to aid their study. But by writing articles on Wikipedia, they become creators of knowledge rather than consumers of knowledge. To write articles on Wikipedia, a student has to engage in research on the topic, collecting information from authentic and verifiable resources, applying thought on the validity of facts before organising the collected information into an article of global standard. This process improves the thought process of the student thereby improving the cognitive skills.The information about a topic may be depicted in slightly varied forms at different sources. Wikipedia articles have to be based on authentic and verifiable sources. Additionally, thinking and logical reasoning is needed before finalising the article sometimes. These could be about distance of a place, achievements of a person and his or her age, different names about the same subject/object or person. These kinds of works are bound to improve the thought process and theby the cognitive skills of the participants. Some work has been done in this area in some parts of the world[1],[2] but no such work has been carried out with more details in India with Indian and Indian languages context. This project aims to accomplish that. There is hardly any material in Indian languages, especially, Kannada, like tutorials for an educator on how to go about using Wikipedia as a platform in education.

In what ways do you think your proposal most contributes to the Movement Strategy 2030 recommendations. Select a maximum of three options that most apply.

Innovate in Free Knowledge, Evaluate, Iterate, and Adapt

Where will this proposal be implemented?


Do you want to apply for multi-year funding?


Project Proposal[edit]

Describe your main strategies to achieve the objective and the activities you will be developing as part of these strategies.

The program will mainly train about 20-25 students on using Wikipedia as a platform for learning. This will include many activities.
  • 1. Wikipedia –
    • a) Reading Wikipedia and identifying the areas of improvement and identifying content gaps which can be taken up by the students for improvement.
    • b) Students will learn how to edit and add articles to Wikipedia – basics of editing, userpage, sandbox, formatting, links, references, adding photos. Learning these basic elements will be followed by advanced topics like templates, infoboxes, navigation boxes, talk pages.
  • 2. Wikidata – learning basics of Wikidata, linking Wikipedia articles with Wikidata, using queries to extract information based on some conditions. Learning some basic concepts of programming will benefit the students in improving their cognitive skills. This part is included in learning the concepts like constant, variable, parameter, condition which are needed in developing templates and queries.
  • 3. Photowalks – There will be one or more photowalks to click rich cultural treasures of the area and upload them to Commons.
  • 4. Tests – In the beginning and at the end of the program, tests will be conducted to assess the cognitive skills of the students. Infographs will be generated to show the effect of the program on the thought process among participants. Cognitive ability tests assess abilities involved in thinking, viz., reasoning, perception, memory, verbal and mathematical ability, and problem solving. Tests will have questions designed to estimate these.
  • 5. Generation of materials – Tutorial files and videos will be created to help educators on how to go about WEP. To help the educators from this region, these will be created in Kannada language. I will be generating these materials with the help of students and the community.
  • 6. Certificate course – Entire program will be designed in the form of a certificate course. This will benefit the students by acquiring a certificate which will add to their Curriculum Vitae.

What is your organization or group's mission?

I was a scientist at the prestigious BARC, Bombay, India. I resigned that job to work towards taking the benefits of ICT to common man and bridging digital divide. I created Kannada’s first website and online magazine, created Kannada version of programming language for children LOGO, educational software and games for learning Kannada, localisation of FOSS. I have been a Wikipedian since 2004. I worked with CIS-A2K & founded Karavali Wikimedians UG later to work in the area of free knowledge.

Indicate if it is a local, international, or regional proposal and if it involves several countries?


Please state if you will be carrying out any of these activities within your programs? Select all that apply.

Organizing Meet-up offline, Workshops, Edit-A-Thons, Photowalk, WikiCamp, Contest

Are you running any in-person events or activities?


Please state if your proposal aims to work to bridge any of the identified content knowledge gaps?

Content Gender gap, Language, Cultural background, ethnicity, religion, racial

Will your work focus on involving participants from any underrepresented communities? Select all categories that apply.

Gender Identity, Ethnic/racial/religious or cultural background, Linguistic / Language

Please state if your proposal includes any of these areas or thematic focus.

Education, Culture, heritage or GLAM, Diversity

Please tell us more about your target participants.

The research program will be conducted at Dr G Shankar Government Women’s First Grade College & PG Study Centre Ajjarkadu Udupi, Karnataka, India. The participants will be girl students of undergraduate courses from arts, commerce and science streams. This college is situated at a tier-II city of Karnataka state. Most students hail from not rich family backgrounds thus not able to afford computers/laptops. They are deprived of extensive use of technology for their study. They will be using the computer labs of the college to participate in this program. Apart from the main goal mentioned above, we also will be helping in bridging the gender and content gaps in the Wikipedia program and bringing more women into the fold of digital skills. Udupi is present in the coastal area of Karnataka state of India. Kannada, Tulu and Konkani are the languages used in this area. Students will write articles in these language Wikipedias thereby addressing another area of improving Wikipedia content in these languages.

Do you have plans to work with other Wikimedia communities, groups or affiliates in your country, or in other countries, to implement this proposal?


Please tell us about these connections online and offline and how you have let Wikimedia communities know about this proposal.

We hope to be working with Karavali Wikimedians User Group whose main focus is on improving Kannada, Tulu and Konkani Wikipedia and sister projects. Applicant of this grant proposal, Pavanaja, is one of the founder members of this user group. Previously, this UG has worked in collaborations with educational institutions in the coastal areas of Karnataka. These experiences will help in designing and fine tuning this project. Volunteers from Wikipedia communities will be invited to help in whichever way they are willing to contribute. Apart from these announcements will be made in the Village Pumps of Kannada and other language Wikipedias about this program. Nowadays posting the messages on social media is generating more interest and awareness among the stakeholders. Hence they also will be used extensively.

Will you be working with other external, non-Wikimedian partners to implement this proposal? Please describe these partnerships.


How do you hope to sustain or expand the work carried out in this proposal after the grant?

A Wikipedia Student Association or Club is proposed to be initiated in the college where this research program will be conducted. The students who take part in the program will initiate and run the club. Once this research program is over, the club will continue to exist, recruit the next set of student members, and will continue the activities around Wikipedia. Thus the work will be sustained after the completion of the project.

Have you received grants from the Wikimedia Foundation before?

Applied previously and did receive a grant

Have you received grants from any non-wiki organization before?


Do you have the team that is needed to implement this proposal?

Name: Dr. U.B. Pavanaja

  • Role: Principal Researcher and project manager (Paid staff)
  • Username: Pavanaja
  • Responsibilities: Overall management and coordination of the project activities. Manage the budget, finance, spending, accounting and reporting. Design and roll out the program. Design the syllabus for the education program, questionnaire for the tests, evaluate, responsible for creating the tutorials and videos. Will generate the final report.

Name: No specific name. Whoever available at that particular time will be used

  • Role: Resource person(s) (Paid per assignment)
  • Responsibilities: Many training programs will be held during the course of the program. On different days, different topics will be covered. Depending on the topic of the day and availability of the person, different person(s) will be used.

Volunteers from the community may be involved in suggesting articles, correcting the articles, suggesting topics for editathons, etc. Mostly these will be done online.

Please state if your organization or group has a Strategic Plan that can help us further understand your proposal. You can also upload it here. (optional)

Learning, Sharing, and Evaluation[edit]

What do you hope to learn from your work in this fund proposal?

I would like to research the impact of Wikipedia as a platform of learning in an academic space. Would like to understand how cognitive skills and the thought process are shaped by using Wikipedia as a platform of learning. There are some examples of such research done in some parts of the world but no such research has been done in India. There is an additional question to ponder is how this whole exercise works in the context of Indian languages, especially Kannada and Tulu, the major languages used as the primary languages of this study.

How do students perceive Wikipedia as a platform of learning. This I am planning to accomplish by making video interviews of the participants at the end of the program. Designing and running this program will help in creating the tutorial files and videos. These learnings can be used by the Wikipedia community and the educators who would like to implement WEP at their institutions.

Core Metrics[edit]

Enter a description of the metric and a number in the target field. If the metric does not apply to you, enter N/A for not applicable.

Core Metrics Summary
Core metrics Description Target
Number of participants The number of participants, all female, in all activities. All these 25 will be new participants 25
Number of editors The number of editors, all female, in all activities. All these 25 will be new editors 25
Number of organizers The number of organisers in all activities: 3

Out of these there may be one new organiser.

Wikipedia Number of articles added: 125 125

If for some reason your proposal will not measure these core metrics please provide an explanation.

Additional Metrics[edit]

Enter a description of the metric and a number in the target field. If the metric does not apply to you, enter N/A for not applicable.

Additional Metrics Description Target
Number of editors that continue to participate/retained after activities
Number of organizers that continue to participate/retained after activities
Number of strategic partnerships that contribute to longer term growth, diversity and sustainability
Feedback from participants on effective strategies for attracting and retaining contributors
Diversity of participants brought in by grantees
Number of people reached through social media publications
Number of activities developed
Number of volunteer hours

What other information will you be collecting to learn about the impacts of your activities? (optional)

  • Number of tutorial files created: 2
  • Number of tutorial files improved: 2
  • Number of tutorial videos created: 5
  • Number of video interviews of participants: 5
  • Number of research paper created: 1

What tools would you use to measure each metric selected?

Number of participants and number of editors: Programs & Events Dashboard and

Event Metrics Number of tutorial files and videos: count manually

How do you hope to share these results so that others can learn from them?

Create a video of our experience, Make a short presentation of the experience, Share results on social media, Share results with our communities, Develop learning material for other users, Share it on Meta-Wiki

Financial Proposal[edit]

What is the amount you are requesting from WMF? Please provide this amount in your local currency. If you are thinking about a multi-year fund, please provide the amount for the first year.

2,098,311 INR

What is this amount in US Currency (to the best of your knowledge)?

27,989 USD

Please share your budget for this proposal.

Please see this spreadsheet for details of the budget -

By submitting your proposal/funding request you agree that you are in agreement with the Application Privacy Statement, WMF Friendly Space Policy and the Universal Code of Conduct.

I have read the Application Privacy Statement, WMF Friend Space Policy and Universal Code of Conduct.




This section is for endorsements only. If you have any comment, opinion or suggestion, please write them in the discussion page.

  1. This is good effort. Endorsing Dr Pavanaja to drive this.--Gangaasoonu (talk) 10:56, 2 December 2021 (UTC)
  2. I endorse this program proposal as this will benefit in aspects of good content, quality and community building by targetting students in education environment. --Vikas Hegde (talk) 12:21, 2 December 2021 (UTC)
  3. This is a good initiative. I would like to Endorse Dr Pavanaja as this would increase the usefullness, reach of wiki content . It would benefit the education sector as well.-- ಪ್ರಶಸ್ತಿ (talk) 14:41, 2 December 2021 (UTC)
  4. Good initiative. ಮಲ್ನಾಡಾಚ್ ಕೊಂಕ್ಣೊ (talk) 15:46, 2 December 2021 (UTC)
  5. I endorse this proposal. This is very good program, It helps the education environment, so I Endorse Dr. Pavanaja for his effort --Kishorekumarrai (talk) 02:17, 3 December 2021 (UTC)
  6. I endorse this project proposal. The gender gap argument is extremely important. Dr. Pavanaja thank you for your brilliant ideas --User:Tomas Castelo Moz
  7. Good initiative. Promoting wiki among the rural students definitely improves the data in wiki and students also will be benefited. I endorse this program. Soorya Hebbar talk 06:30, 3 December 2021 (UTC)
  8. I really endorse this project proposal, this is actually very good initiative program in this region. it gives a clear picture of Wikipedia in the field of education. many educationalists will gain knowledge about Wikipedia community. --Santhosh Notagar (talk) 10:34, 3 December 2021 (UTC)
  9. This project is need to our community. In our region we have three wikipedia languages(Kannada, Tulu and Konkani). So many of wikipedia editors will joine the editathon and photo walk. I endorse this project.--Vishwanatha Badikana (talk) 10:48, 3 December 2021 (UTC)
  10. I endorse this proposal --Sudheerbs (talk) 05:56, 4 December 2021 (UTC)
  11. I strongly support this proposal. Kambai Akau (talk) 15:17, 5 December 2021 (UTC)
  12. I strongly support this proposal - Dhanalakshmi .K. T (talk) 09:08, 6 December 2021 (UTC)
  13. I endorse this proposal --BHARATHESHA ALASANDEMAJALU (talk) 04:48, 9 December 2021 (UTC)
  14. I endorse this proposal. --Krishnakulkarni36 (talk) 06:59, 9 December 2021 (UTC)
  15. I support this proposal - Arpitha05 (talk) 05:57, 10 December 2021 (UTC)
  16. I support this proposal- --Chaithra C Nayak (talk) 06:16, 11 December 2021 (UTC)
  17. I Support this project --Babitha Shetty (talk) 06:39, 11 December 2021 (UTC)
  18. I strongly support this project-- Mahaveer Indra (talk) 07:24, 11 December 2021 (UTC)
  19. I strong support this project. This project is need to our community. Gill jassu (talk) 05:01, 21 December 2021 (UTC)
  20. We at Dr G Shankar Govt. Women's First Grade College & Post Graduate Study Centre, Udupi, have jointly organized Wikipedia Editathons/Workshops in association with Karavali Wikimedians and Wikiwomen Mangaluru in the past. Students have utilized the opportunities and appreciated the efforts. As per the feedback received, the students are expecting more skill-imparting and participative learning of new techniques and technologies of content creation and sharing. The project proposed by Dr UB Pavanaja is a timely one and really benefitting students for whom digital skills and digital learning has become an integral part of their education even inside their classrooms. I strongly endorse the proposed project and wish Dr Pavanaja all the very best. Gradiga (talk) 15:43, 4 January 2022 (UTC)


  1. Meseguer-Artola, Antoni; Rodríguez-Ardura, Inma; Ammetller, Gisela; Rimbau-Gilabert, Eva (2020). “Academic impact and perceived value of Wikipedia as a primary learning resource in higher education”. Profesional de la información, v. 29, n. 3, e290329.
  2. Wikipedia as a platform for impactful learning: A new course model in higher education, Shani Evenstein Sigalov & Rafi Nachmias, Educ Inf Technol (2017) 22:2959–2979,