Grants:Project/WikiProject Limnology and Oceanography/recruiting aquatic editors/Final

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proposal people timeline & progress finances midpoint report final report


Draft report
This is a draft of a Project Grant report for a grant funded for fiscal year 2018-19. Please do not respond or comment on it until its status has changed from draft to under review. To read the approved grant submission, please visit Grants:Project/WikiProject Limnology and Oceanography/recruiting aquatic editors


For grantees: When this report is complete and ready to review, please contact projectgrants(_AT_)wikimedia.org with the subject line Ready to review.



Welcome to this project's final report! This report shares the outcomes, impact and learnings from the grantee's project.

Part 1: The Project[edit]

Summary[edit]

We piloted a coordinated program in 16 aquatic classrooms which totaled 284 student editors and connected the students to over 50 aquatic scientists as expert content reviewers. 173 aquatic-related English Wikipedia articles were improved and 22 new articles were created by the students. We also produced motivational and instructional training videos aimed at aquatic experts, educators and students.

Project Goals[edit]

Goal 1: Create recruitment and instructional training videos for aquatic scientists, educators, and their students to reduce barriers to editing Wikipedia specifically for the aquatic sciences.

We produced a motivational and a training video aimed at aquatic experts, educators, and students. The motivational video is a short, animated video that describe the importance of Wikipedia for aquatic information dissemination in the Internet age and the importance of many people contributing to this shared resource. The instructional video is a slightly longer, animated video that describes how to edit Wikipedia by showing a few examples of editing for aquatic pages. The instructional video goes over adding new text to pages, adding infoboxes and references, and briefly goes over the ten simple rules for editing Wikipedia. These videos will be disseminated broadly and will be used by educators when incorporating Wikipedia editing in their classroom curriculum. Several educators from the pilot program have used the videos in new classes that they taught outside of the pilot program. The videos have been shared on YouTube, Twitter (e.g. 1, 2, 3), and will be used at an upcoming workshop at the Joint Aquatic Science Meeting in 2022 (website of conference).

Goal 2: Pilot a program that links professional aquatic scientists with students who are improving Wikipedia pages related to the aquatic sciences. The scientists will act as resource guides and reviewers of content created by the students.

We have successfully implemented a pilot program that links aquatic scientists with students who are improving aquatic Wikipedia pages as a part of a course curriculum. 16 courses participated in the pilot program across the lifetime of the grant, and all courses used WikiEdu to help guide the course instruction. In total, there were 284 students who improved aquatic Wikipedia pages and over 50 aquatic scientists who reviewed and provided feedback on the content that was generated by the students. Many students and scientists had never edited Wikipedia before and this pilot program brought many new editors to the aquatic Wikipedia space.

Project Impact[edit]

Important: The Wikimedia Foundation is no longer collecting Global Metrics for Project Grants. We are currently updating our pages to remove legacy references, but please ignore any that you encounter until we finish.

Targets[edit]

  1. In the first column of the table below, please copy and paste the measures you selected to help you evaluate your project's success (see the Project Impact section of your proposal). Please use one row for each measure. If you set a numeric target for the measure, please include the number.
  2. In the second column, describe your project's actual results. If you set a numeric target for the measure, please report numerically in this column. Otherwise, write a brief sentence summarizing your output or outcome for this measure.
  3. In the third column, you have the option to provide further explanation as needed. You may also add additional explanation below this table.
Planned measure of success
(include numeric target, if applicable)
Actual result Explanation
We will evaluate the utility of our video tutorials through a combination of video viewership, Wikipedia article tracking tools, and enrollment in WP L&O. Specifically, we hope to have at least 5,000 video views with over 50% of these views coming from outside of the United States, recruit at least 30 new PhD-level aquatic scientists to as editors and classroom ambassadors, and add 50,000 words to aquatic, English-language Wikipedia pages outside of the pilot classroom program. We recently released videos to the public and are in the process of sharing more broadly with the aquatic science community. Both the motivational and instructional video viewership will be continued to be assessed. Currently, the videos have collectively received 217 views on YouTube and Wikimedia in the last month since they've been public and sharing the videos on Twitter has collectively received 5,076 impressions. We recruited over 50 aquatic scientists to review content generated by the students of our pilot classroom project, and many of the reviewers were from outside of the United States (based on email addresses). We have not hosted edit-a-thons since the beginning of the grant so it is difficult to assess how many words have been added to Wikipedia for aquatic content outside of the classroom activities. One scientist reached out and we are planning on hosting a WikiMedia editing workshop in May 2022 at the Joint Aquatic Science Meeting both in-person and virtually.
Using Wiki Education dashboard tools, we will track edits made by students in our proposed pilot program to gauge the impact. These tools track the number of edits, views, references added, and structural completeness score of each article edited. Our goal is to pilot this program in 20 classrooms, which could potentially recruit around 400 new editors for aquatic-related articles. With this pilot program, we expect to improve at least 200 aquatic-related English Wikipedia articles over the course of a year. We already have commitments from 10 instructors to participate in this pilot program. We piloted this program in 16 aquatic classrooms which totaled 284 student editors and over 50 aquatic scientists as content reviewers. 173 aquatic-related English Wikipedia articles were improved and 22 new articles were created by the students.
We anticipate sustained, positive impacts on the Wikimedia community even after the project is over because the instructional and recruitment videos will continue to be hosted online and shared at scientific conferences, workshops, and in undergraduate classroom settings. We anticipate the pilot program will encourage other instructors to incorporate Wikipedia editing in the classroom for aquatic sciences. We will also continue to recruit more aquatic scientists to WP L&O through continued outreach on Twitter and workshops at scientific meetings. We have had other aquatic scientists reach out to us to help organize a Wikipedia editing workshop at the next Joint Aquatic Sciences Meeting in 2022. We have produced a series of handouts that should make it easier for aquatic educators to get started with editing Wikipedia in the classroom. 16 editors have joined the WikiProject Limnology and Oceanography since the start of the grant.
We plan to survey project participants to assess project outcomes. Our group already has experience implementing survey methods for participants of this Wikiproject. During past “editathons,” we surveyed participants to obtain data to assess our instructional materials, participants’ experience editing pages, and interest in future Wikipedia contributions post-editathon. We already have established Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval for performing participant surveys. 100% of survey respondents said the pilot editing program was a "positive experience for their students" and 100% of respondents would incorporate Wikipedia editing in the classroom again. The coordinator position and external review process was especially positive for the instructors and students "External peer review process was the particularly impactful. The ability to choose topics from the WikiProject L&O list that needed to be addressed but also fit their research topics (as graduate students) made them feel they were doing something meaningful and impactful.", "It [external review process] was fabulous and essential to making the experience positive and authentic. Jolie did a great job and the reviewers provided excellent feedback. Keep this!", "I was very impressed by the external review process. The turn around was quick and the feedback was helpful and supportive.", "It [external review process] was great! The timing was a little tricky to figure out and some groups didn't have much time to incorporate feed back, but the content of the reviews was super helpful.", "They [students] appreciated the opinions of professionals and felt more seen and valued because of the process. They liked getting the feedback, although I am certain that some were frustrated by the content as the reviewers had no way to know what the assignment was (I should have thought of that), so they often suggested great ideas that were beyond the scope of what my students were required to do.", "The students appreciated a link to an expert in the field and it made them feel more confident in the content of their articles. Based on their final presentations, this was their favorite part of the 12-week process."


Story[edit]

Looking back over your whole project, what did you achieve? Tell us the story of your achievements, your results, your outcomes. Focus on inspiring moments, tough challenges, interesting anecdotes or anything that highlights the outcomes of your project. Imagine that you are sharing with a friend about the achievements that matter most to you in your project.

  • This should not be a list of what you did. You will be asked to provide that later in the Methods and Activities section.
  • Consider your original goals as you write your project's story, but don't let them limit you. Your project may have important outcomes you weren't expecting. Please focus on the impact that you believe matters most.

We were really encouraged by all the participants in the project including students, instructors, aquatic expert reviewers, our project coordinator, and interested followers of the project. This sort of project self selects for those passionate about free information and exploring creative and new ways to engage students, and we think there is a large portion of the aquatic science community that have a desire for contributing to Wikipedia but may not know how to start. With this project, we estimate over 350 people contributed in some way to aquatic Wikipedia pages, which is beyond what our group has achieved with other efforts such as edit-a-thons and workshops. We hope that at least a portion of these contributors will continue to add their knowledge to aquatic Wikipedia pages and/or encourage others to join in as well.

One of the biggest successes of the grant was the community building that happened because of the nature of the project. We instituted a Slack channel and held weekly to bi-weekly meetings with all the instructors to answer questions and provide guidance on upcoming tasks throughout the semester. This peer support network was "essential" according to several of the instructors in the pilot project and was a great opportunity to share ideas, common struggles, and curriculum. Instructors shared their course curriculum with others and/or with the pilot project which we hope to write up in a curriculum-based article so that others who want to start a similar course project can learn from examples tailored to the aquatic sciences.

Prior to the videos, we did not have a succinct way of summing up why aquatic experts should contribute to Wikipedia pages or a good way to show how to contribute. With the production of those videos, we now can point new-to-Wikipedia editors to those videos to share some of our groups' motivation for contributing to aquatic Wikipedia pages and briefly mention how to go about it. There are other instructional videos out there but tailoring to a specific field helps make the task of editing Wikipedia less daunting because the potential contributor knows there is a community of aquatic experts they can relate to.

We struggled to get contributors from marine sciences, which we don't have a good answer as to why this is. We advertised to both freshwater and marine science communities and have a fairly substantial marine science following on Twitter. We have not conducted a workshop at a marine-specific conference (although some have been joint freshwater and marine), which may have led to some lack of knowledge about the motivation / community behind contributing to aquatic Wikipedia pages.

Survey(s)[edit]

If you used surveys to evaluate the success of your project, please provide a link(s) in this section, then briefly summarize your survey results in your own words. Include three interesting outputs or outcomes that the survey revealed.

We conducted internal surveys from the instructors of the course which were open-ended questions. We will share some of the highlights here (also shared above in the table):

100% of survey respondents said the pilot editing program was a "positive experience for their students" and 100% of respondents would incorporate Wikipedia editing in the classroom again. The coordinator position and external review process was especially positive for the instructors and students "External peer review process was the particularly impactful. The ability to choose topics from the WikiProject L&O list that needed to be addressed but also fit their research topics (as graduate students) made them feel they were doing something meaningful and impactful.", "It [external review process] was fabulous and essential to making the experience positive and authentic. Jolie did a great job and the reviewers provided excellent feedback. Keep this!", "I was very impressed by the external review process. The turn around was quick and the feedback was helpful and supportive.", "It [external review process] was great! The timing was a little tricky to figure out and some groups didn't have much time to incorporate feed back, but the content of the reviews was super helpful.", "They [students] appreciated the opinions of professionals and felt more seen and valued because of the process. They liked getting the feedback, although I am certain that some were frustrated by the content as the reviewers had no way to know what the assignment was (I should have thought of that), so they often suggested great ideas that were beyond the scope of what my students were required to do.", "The students appreciated a link to an expert in the field and it made them feel more confident in the content of their articles. Based on their final presentations, this was their favorite part of the 12-week process."

Other[edit]

Is there another way you would prefer to communicate the actual results of your project, as you understand them? You can do that here!

Methods and activities[edit]

Please provide a list of the main methods and activities through which you completed your project.

  • We used Slack, email, Zoom, and Google Drive for communication and file sharing. Slack, email, and Zoom were extremely helpful for building a peer support community amongst the course instructors
  • Instructors relied on WikiEdu to teach their courses - we found this to be quite essential as well because WikiEdu has a lot of tools and resources available for incorporating Wikipedia editing in classrooms so that we did not have to come up with those materials for the instructors or students.
  • We used Twitter, listservs, and email to advertise for positions, recruit instructors and reviewers, and give project updates. Twitter was especially helpful for recruiting reviewers of aquatic content as over 40 of the ~50 reviewers responded from the Twitter advertisements.
  • We worked with a professional videographer / designer to create motivational and instructional videos for the adding aquatic content to Wikipedia. This was extremely valuable as Elizabeth could take our ideas and boring facts and turn them into engaging content.

Project resources[edit]

Please provide links to all public, online documents and other artifacts that you created during the course of this project. Even if you have linked to them elsewhere in this report, this section serves as a centralized archive for everything you created during your project. Examples include: meeting notes, participant lists, photos or graphics uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, template messages sent to participants, wiki pages, social media (Facebook groups, Twitter accounts), datasets, surveys, questionnaires, code repositories... If possible, include a brief summary with each link.

Learning[edit]

The best thing about trying something new is that you learn from it. We want to follow in your footsteps and learn along with you, and we want to know that you took enough risks in your project to have learned something really interesting! Think about what recommendations you have for others who may follow in your footsteps, and use the below sections to describe what worked and what didn’t.

What worked well[edit]

What did you try that was successful and you'd recommend others do? To help spread successful strategies so that they can be of use to others in the movement, rather than writing lots of text here, we'd like you to share your finding in the form of a link to a learning pattern.

What didn’t work[edit]

What did you try that you learned didn't work? What would you think about doing differently in the future? Please list these as short bullet points.

Other recommendations[edit]

If you have additional recommendations or reflections that don’t fit into the above sections, please list them here.

Next steps and opportunities[edit]

Are there opportunities for future growth of this project, or new areas you have uncovered in the course of this grant that could be fruitful for more exploration (either by yourself, or others)? What ideas or suggestions do you have for future projects based on the work you’ve completed? Please list these as short bullet points.

  • We hope to write up an article that describes how to create a course for editing aquatic content on Wikipedia and share curriculum that was provided by the educators of our pilot program in this grant.

Part 2: The Grant[edit]

Finances[edit]

Actual spending[edit]

Please copy and paste the completed table from your project finances page. Check that you’ve listed the actual expenditures compared with what was originally planned. If there are differences between the planned and actual use of funds, please use the column provided to explain them.

Expense Approved amount Actual funds spent Difference
Coordinator, education pilot project $6,000 USD $6,000 USD $0 USD
Contractor, multimedia team $3,200 USD $3,270 USD -$70 USD
Total $9,200 USD $9,270 USD -$70 USD


Remaining funds[edit]

Do you have any unspent funds from the grant?

Please answer yes or no. If yes, list the amount you did not use and explain why.

  • no

If you have unspent funds, they must be returned to WMF. Please see the instructions for returning unspent funds and indicate here if this is still in progress, or if this is already completed:

  • NA

Documentation[edit]

Did you send documentation of all expenses paid with grant funds to grantsadmin(_AT_)wikimedia.org, according to the guidelines here?

Please answer yes or no. If no, include an explanation.

  • yes

Confirmation of project status[edit]

Did you comply with the requirements specified by WMF in the grant agreement?

Please answer yes or no.

  • yes

Is your project completed?

Please answer yes or no.

  • yes

Grantee reflection[edit]

We’d love to hear any thoughts you have on what this project has meant to you, or how the experience of being a grantee has gone overall. Is there something that surprised you, or that you particularly enjoyed, or that you’ll do differently going forward as a result of the Project Grant experience? Please share it here!

We loved the community that was generated through this grant. There are so many enthusiastic people who want to contribute to free aquatic information!