Grants talk:IEG/Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool

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Budget[edit]

I have comments on Budget part:

  • Low cost laptops - $105 per laptop x 30 laptops = $3150 - This is roughly 6,800 INR, hard to get useful laptop (netbook) in this range in India. Also, if you piloting, 15 laptops are OK too.
  • project laptop - $1000 x 1 = $1000 - This can be easy to reduce to $400. There are decent netbook laptop, which can be used for presentation, editing and travel-friendly.

--KartikMistry (talk) 14:25, 15 March 2016 (UTC)

Hi User:KartikMistry! Thanks for your comments. A small clarification: the term 'pilot' in the proposal refers to pilot for the experiment. The data from the pilot will feed into the actual experiment thus helping refine the research problem, hypotheses and the process. I need thirty systems since experimental studies need a minimum of thirty participants per group to get statistically significant data. Having half the numbers imply that double the time and effort is required.
I am planning to buy the Vidyut laptops from IITB. I have been using a Vidyut laptop for several months and have found it very useful. Since we may not have access to computers on demand and I see more experiments being designed for a longer period than just the project, I thought having a laptop library will be useful.
To answer the second comment, yes, you have a valid point. However, I have been using a Lenovo Thinkpad T420 for several years and find the support and build quality very good even at the beginning of the fifth year. I feel that buying a Lenovo X250 or equivalent is a good investment for the project. If budget was a constraint I would have definitely gone in for a low-cost netbook. Vincentvikram (talk) 16:19, 15 March 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia Education Program and WikiEd Foundation[edit]

To what extent do you plan to model this project after the Wikipedia Education Program? The Wiki Education Foundation is limited to the United States and Canada. Are you interested in forming an organization similar to the WikiEd Foundation in your region? EllenCT (talk) 03:03, 21 March 2016 (UTC)

@EllenCT: Thanks for your questions. I did read through the links on different occasions but I should say that I do not have a clear idea as to what the existing model(s) is(are). A dedicated education programme is definitely needed here and I had brought this up in a meetup in Bangalore when @Asaf (WMF): was visiting.
Having said that, I think the first step should be to make existing work in the field as generalisable as possible. I see a lot of experiments(not in the strict sense of the term) being done and documented by teachers. While the use of Wikipedia in those contexts are novel, I am critical on the positive effect on the learning process. I am not sure if the pedagogy used is relevant to a context that needs to generate more producers than consumers and this is a part of the process to address the fundamental problem of increasing the number of contributors and articles and improving the quality of articles. Further, there is the question of generalisability of the study. I think we can fill this gap by designing studies that are strong both pedagogically and from a research methods point of view.
One way we can do this is by having a researcher exchange programme or a programme where educators can request for help of a researcher in helping them design a study based on need or help in evaluating it once the study is done so that pedagogical short-comings may be identified and rectified in the next iteration. The investment for such an option will involve time and some travel funding in the extreme case since most of the planning can be done on paper.
Perhaps some of the other educators I know can shed more light @Msannakoval, LiAnna (Wiki Ed), and Visdaviva:. Thanks Vincentvikram (talk) 08:54, 23 March 2016 (UTC)
@LiAnna (Wiki Ed): re-pinging because sometimes notifications don't work when this sort of thing happens. EllenCT (talk) 15:48, 23 March 2016 (UTC)
Thanks, EllenCT — definitely didn't get the ping the first time. @Vincentvikram:, I'm interested in your project but the link to your pilot on the main page doesn't seem to be working for me. Can you check it? I'd like to read more about your pilot before offering an opinion. :) --LiAnna (Wiki Ed) (talk) 23:43, 23 March 2016 (UTC)
Hi @LiAnna (Wiki Ed):! Are you referring to this link http://home.iitb.ac.in/~vincentvikram/wikipedia2015.html ? Vincentvikram (talk) 08:08, 26 March 2016 (UTC)
@LiAnna (Wiki Ed): ^ :)
Ah, the link works now, thanks Vincentvikram! It's exciting to see your piloted success in this area; I'm definitely excited to see a desire to see strong instructor training projects in the works. I do encourage you to check out what we've already done, though, because I think a lot of Wiki Ed's materials could simply be adapted for the local context in India. We support 350+ classes of students each year, so we have a lot of best practices we've learned over the years! I encourage you to check out our testing version of our Dashboard -- you can play around with it without breaking anything -- at dashboard-testing.wikiedu.org. Log in with your Wikipedia account, and go through our instructor orientation. We have five modules -- a generic one introducing people to teaching with Wikipedia, then case study modules for three different assignment types, as well as a supplemental module explaining editing in medical topics. You can also then create a course page -- when you do so, it explains some best practices and offers options for how to design an assignment; then it will create a timeline that meets the needs of your class while also meeting our best practices in editing Wikipedia. We've found that using technology this way to do an online orientation and then an assignment design wizard, allows us to scale teacher training quickly and easily. I encourage you to think through adapting something like this to your local context. --LiAnna (Wiki Ed) (talk) 22:37, 28 March 2016 (UTC)

April 12 Proposal Deadline: Reminder to change status to 'proposed'[edit]

The deadline for Individual Engagement Grant (IEG) submissions this round is April 12th, 2016. To submit your proposal, you must (1) complete the proposal entirely, filling in all empty fields, and (2) change the status from "draft" to "proposed." As soon as you’re ready, you should begin to invite any communities affected by your project to provide feedback on your proposal talkpage. If you have any questions about finishing up or would like to brainstorm with us about your proposal, we're hosting a few IEG proposal help sessions this month in Google Hangouts:

I'm also happy to set up an individual session.

Warm regards,
--Marti (WMF) (talk) 06:02, 2 April 2016 (UTC)

@Mjohnson (WMF): Thanks for the updates. I was able to join in on 12 April only after the session was done. Can we have a meeting on either 14th or 15th at 16:00 - 17:00 UTC? Thanks Vincentvikram (talk) 06:34, 13 April 2016 (UTC)

Eligibility confirmed[edit]

Inspire astrocat aqua.png

This Individual Engagement Grant proposal is under review!

We've confirmed your proposal is eligible for review and scoring. Please feel free to ask questions and make changes to this proposal as discussions continue during this community comments period (through 2 May 2016).

The committee's formal review begins on 3 May 2016, and grants will be announced 17 June 2016. See the round 1 2016 schedule for more details.

Questions? Contact us at iegrants(_AT_)wikimedia · org .

--Marti (WMF) (talk) 12:00, 28 April 2016 (UTC)

Aggregated feedback from the committee for Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool[edit]

Scoring rubric Score
(A) Impact potential
  • Does it have the potential to increase gender diversity in Wikimedia projects, either in terms of content, contributors, or both?
  • Does it have the potential for online impact?
  • Can it be sustained, scaled, or adapted elsewhere after the grant ends?
7.1
(B) Community engagement
  • Does it have a specific target community and plan to engage it often?
  • Does it have community support?
5.4
(C) Ability to execute
  • Can the scope be accomplished in the proposed timeframe?
  • Is the budget realistic/efficient ?
  • Do the participants have the necessary skills/experience?
6.3
(D) Measures of success
  • Are there both quantitative and qualitative measures of success?
  • Are they realistic?
  • Can they be measured?
5.1
Additional comments from the Committee:
  • Seems to be meant for teachers using Wikipedia in the classroom. I do not see a clear connection between how laptops are needed and capturing the student experience as a way forward to improve teaching strategies. The current tried-and-true teaching strategy of Wikipedia that successfully "flipped" classrooms since the early 2000's is to "read the article, and if you don't get it, read it again, and if you still don't get it, read the related articles, and repeat."
  • This research proposal fits with the strategic priority to understand our users to better serve their needs. Namely, what do students and teachers gain from editing Wikipedia in the classroom/school assignments? The research could have important applications for other researchers, educators, WMF staff/volunteers involved with the Wikipedia Education Program and the Wiki Education Foundation.
  • Interesting idea but the plan needs to be further developed.
  • Dashboard is meant to be used in a relevant skills context. This project could be biased.
  • This project definitely fits with Wikimedia's priorities with regards to education and has the potential for massive impact. As was noted in the talk page, similar projects already exist in the United States and the participant would probably benefit from meeting and discussing with the Wikipedia Education Program as well as the Wiki Education Foundation.
  • We have not had much luck in definitive reporting from classroom experiments, mostly because when student-editors leave school they are likely to take on new usernames when they return to Wikipedia.
  • The research’s approach is very unclear to me, maybe because the research is still in its early stages of planning/design, but it makes it difficult to assess the project’s feasibility and impact.
  • I know there are already strong pedagogical studies about using technical supports like Wikimedia projects, but there is no mention of these studies or schools of thought. In Europe (Italy and Switzerland at least), there are already some governmental offices partnering with researchers about the impact of technical means in the classroom.
  • In the past projects would be unable to retain student editors beyond their conclusion. I would like to see more effort in this area so that these students remain editors after the project itself ends.
  • I do think this project can build upon existing projects in the Indian educational context. I also think this has the potential to serve as a model for other Wikipedia communities that want to improve the usage of Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool. I would like to see more elaboration on the measures of success and the project goals. Are we talking about Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool in particular disciplines, or other institutions?
  • I am unsure about the proposal, but the project seems to have already begun.
  • As stated above, it seems like the research is still in its early stages. The scope is not well defined and my hunch is that the project - which includes qualitative data collection and analysis, and consultations with the Indic Wikipedia community - would take longer than 6 months. However, the applicant does have relevant skills and experience, along with a handful of strong endorsements.
  • Some good questions about the budget were noted and addressed in the Talk Page, so I have very few concerns at this point. The participant is clearly both an experienced Wikipedian and educator. I look forward to what they bring to the table!
  • There seems to be community engagement, but it is unclear if this is with teachers or Wikipedians.
  • It appears as this proposal will focus on students entirely and not the Wikimedia community as a whole. This can be problematic if the local community assumes a hostile stance against the students who could make seemingly disruptive mistakes in the community. I would recommend some focus on community engagement.
  • Again, I think this would benefit from connections with Wikipedia educational programs outside of India.
  • Education has a enough fields to be developed. This project tries to give an approach in some regional context with limited Internet access. I have some doubts about the budget and the hardware (i.e. laptops), and how success is measured.
  • We need more information. It is great that teachers are on board with using Wikipedia in the classroom, but I am unclear about its impact in the movement. Requiring students to edit does not make them editors, no matter how much fun they might have.
  • I'd like to see the applicant flesh out their research a bit more (i.e. be at the stage where experimental design is well underway and/or completed) and then return with an updated proposal.
  • This proposal has a good preamble but the rest needs significant improvement. For instance, I don't know why there are so many laptops to buy.
  • It isn't clear to me why 30 laptops are needed. Are there 30 students? If so, it would be best to have spare laptops in case existing ones malfunction or would prompt repairs (which would cost as much as stand-by funds). "Other administrative and logistic costs" is confusing and ambiguous. A much better breakdown of the budget is needed.

-- MJue (WMF) (talk) 17:04, 3 June 2016 (UTC) on behalf of the IEG Committee

Hi MJue (WMF) Thanks for sharing the scoring and feedback of the committee. How should I proceed next? Should I update the proposal taking into consideration the feedback of the committee or should I provide clarification here itself? Kindly guide. Thanks again Vincentvikram (talk) 04:52, 5 June 2016 (UTC)
@Mjohnson (WMF):^
@Mjohnson (WMF): and @MJue (WMF): I have tried to address the comments by the committee to the best of my ability. Looking forward to a favourable response

Responses to IEG committee comments[edit]

Hello! I will try my best to address the comments made by the IEG committee

Elaborating on the 'Indian context'[edit]

Seems to be meant for teachers using Wikipedia in the classroom. I do not see a clear connection between how laptops are needed and capturing the student experience as a way forward to improve teaching strategies. The current tried-and-true teaching strategy of Wikipedia that successfully "flipped" classrooms since the early 2000's is to "read the article, and if you don't get it, read it again, and if you still don't get it, read the related articles, and repeat."

Yes, you are right in pointing out that this proposal is focused more on teachers using Wikipedia in the classroom to engage active learning. While flipped classroom is a good idea in theory, it is very difficult to implement in most of the regular schools and colleges here in the country. There are two main reasons: 1. The number of students in the classroom are very high, ranging from 60-100. 2. The focus of all the educational stakeholders is more on scoring marks than on learning. This is due to limited resource constraints and the need for excessive competition. Further, my doctoral research group has already been trying to adapt several strategies to the "Indian context" and found that several major and minor changes are required before they could be incorporated. I see Wikipedia as a tool to help migrate both teachers and students to a more learner-centric approach because I feel that this paradigm shift will also benefit the quality goals of Wikipedia.

I do think this project can build upon existing projects in the Indian educational context. I also think this has the potential to serve as a model for other Wikipedia communities that want to improve the usage of Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool. I would like to see more elaboration on the measures of success and the project goals. Are we talking about Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool in particular disciplines, or other institution?s

The focus is on disciplines rather than institutions because most institutions have a lot of similarities and we can port learning strategies with minimum modification. Currently, it is being used in teacher training, mathematics, languages, and others. You can find the old reports here
A brief outline has been mentioned at Measures of success. We will elaborate further and also design/adapt appropriate rubrics.

Focuses on learner engagement using Wikipedia in the classroom[edit]

This research proposal fits with the strategic priority to understand our users to better serve their needs. Namely, what do students and teachers gain from editing Wikipedia in the classroom/school assignments? The research could have important applications for other researchers, educators, WMF staff/volunteers involved with the Wikipedia Education Program and the Wiki Education Foundation.

Yes, I agree

Dashboard is meant to be used in a relevant skills context. This project could be biased.

I do not understand what you mean by "biased" in this context. However, I have integrated the use of the dashboard into the design to ensure that we leverage existing experiences into the study.

We have not had much luck in definitive reporting from classroom experiments, mostly because when student-editors leave school they are likely to take on new usernames when they return to Wikipedia.

In the past projects would be unable to retain student editors beyond their conclusion. I would like to see more effort in this area so that these students remain editors after the project itself ends.

Since this is an institutional effort more than a single teacher/researcher, I think we will be able to design processes to track student editors once they are done with their coursework

I know there are already strong pedagogical studies about using technical supports like Wikimedia projects, but there is no mention of these studies or schools of thought. In Europe (Italy and Switzerland at least), there are already some governmental offices partnering with researchers about the impact of technical means in the classroom.

Sure, it will really nice to get my hands on these reports!

We need more information. It is great that teachers are on board with using Wikipedia in the classroom, but I am unclear about its impact in the movement. Requiring students to edit does not make them editors, no matter how much fun they might have.

There are multiple approaches to addressing the question of improving quality of edits being made. Most students may not become editors but the few that do will be familiar and comfortable with the thinking processes required. My hypothesis is that one reason why there is so much friction between old and new editors is because old editors do not know the difficulties in thinking skills that the new editors have and are unable to create scaffolds to help. Rather, they tend to show attitudes which sometimes border on rude to obnoxious. We need to have not one but many processes to engage learners with different thinking skill abilities. By enabling the thinking skills using Wikipedia as a pedagogical tool you will have higher quality edits as an outcome. I am sure that my teacher trainees who have worked with me will definitely inspire others to become editors even if not themselves.

Travel and/or project grant?[edit]

This project definitely fits with Wikimedia's priorities with regards to education and has the potential for massive impact. As was noted in the talk page, similar projects already exist in the United States and the participant would probably benefit from meeting and discussing with the Wikipedia Education Program as well as the Wiki Education Foundation.

Again, I think this would benefit from connections with Wikipedia educational programs outside of India.

I absolutely agree with these two points. Unfortunately, I do not know how to operationalise it. Is there a possibility to observe how US/European/South American Education Programme works? I had already discussed with my University the idea of hosting an India Education Programme as there is a strong need and they are very supportive of the idea. Please do suggest how to proceed as I am sure I will be able to help out in the long term. As a side note, I am currently anchoring another organisation en:Free_Software_Movement_of_Karnataka and on the Executive Committee of en:Free_Software_Movement_of_India. We have presence in GNU/Linux User Groups all over the country. This allows for effective intervention if the need arises.

Work in progress[edit]

The research’s approach is very unclear to me, maybe because the research is still in its early stages of planning/design, but it makes it difficult to assess the project’s feasibility and impact.

Interesting idea but the plan needs to be further developed.

I am unsure about the proposal, but the project seems to have already begun.

As stated above, it seems like the research is still in its early stages. The scope is not well defined and my hunch is that the project - which includes qualitative data collection and analysis, and consultations with the Indic Wikipedia community - would take longer than 6 months. However, the applicant does have relevant skills and experience, along with a handful of strong endorsements.

You have raised valid concerns. I have not been able to spend more time with the proposal due to previous commitments. However, I will be freeing myself to work fully on this project and hence the need for full-time funding. I will also be hiring a few consultants for small specialised tasks along with interns to ensure that the project is completed to satisfaction. The pilot project was to explore possibilities and I think it is sufficient proof to show competency. To address the last comment on time required to complete the study, the study will likely take more than six months to answer all questions but we put them in either way to ensure completeness. We will extend the project if the need arises.

Why do we need laptops?[edit]

Some good questions about the budget were noted and addressed in the Talk Page, so I have very few concerns at this point. The participant is clearly both an experienced Wikipedian and educator. I look forward to what they bring to the table!

It isn't clear to me why 30 laptops are needed. Are there 30 students? If so, it would be best to have spare laptops in case existing ones malfunction or would prompt repairs (which would cost as much as stand-by funds). "Other administrative and logistic costs" is confusing and ambiguous. A much better breakdown of the budget is needed.

This proposal has a good preamble but the rest needs significant improvement. For instance, I don't know why there are so many laptops to buy.

Thanks for the vote of confidence :) I appreciate it a lot! If you look at the reports you will notice that several hundreds of students have already been a part of several cycles of Wikipedia in Education at our University. While we do have several computer labs, these labs are engaged most of the time and it is difficult to take my students there without prior scheduling. The laptops are specifically for conducting experiments when testing effectiveness of one learning strategy over another. Example, I want to test effectiveness of using Wikipedia over paper based approach in improving writing skills using collaborative writing techniques. Thirty would be a minimum number per group(experimental vs control) and hence the request for low-cost laptops. We could do with a few more in case of damage etc
Side note: I should note that the 30+ laptops are low-cost systems which were designed as a response to the OLPC challenge for the Indian context where students were worried more about the cost than design. I think they are very good value for price and may even recommend other projects to go ahead and buy them.
Administrative costs: see note below under Budgets

Engagement of multiple communities[edit]

There seems to be community engagement, but it is unclear if this is with teachers or Wikipedians.

I had missed out on those details in the proposal. There are multiple communities involved here. First, is the teaching community. We have a lot of support in terms of the work that is already being done in creating domain specific articles not only in English but also in Indic languages. Second, are the Indic Wikipedians. We have been reaching out to them through multiple channels and this is an ongoing process. Several of them are already involved in conducting trainings with the University. Third, are the Editors on English Wikipedia. This is a big task at hand. Several of the education processes on Wikipedia are mainly focused on certain countries and this is not an enabling factor for countries like India. I had tried to get Course Coordinator privilege but the process was too complicated and I had to focus more on the priorities at hand. Thus, engagement with the existing community is a huge priority for the project.

It appears as this proposal will focus on students entirely and not the Wikimedia community as a whole. This can be problematic if the local community assumes a hostile stance against the students who could make seemingly disruptive mistakes in the community. I would recommend some focus on community engagement.

While running the pilot programme late last year, I realised the difficulties that came up without properly engaging the respective Indic language communities. if you go through my talk page, not only on the English wiki but also almost 6-7 indic language wikis, and follow my discussions you will see that I have tried to engage with editors and admins. On reflection, my idea is to post a note in the respective village pumps, send emails to the respective mailing lists and list out the participants Wikipedia IDs on a page which can be shared. I personally feel that this is not a one-time engagement but rather a continuing one. An important point to note is that our university, en:Christ_University, is part of a larger Wikipedia project and my specific proposal is to improve the pedagogical aspect. Several Wikipedians are already engaged with the training programme both on- and ofline.

Ref: https://outreach.wikimedia.org/wiki/Education/Countries/India/Christ_University

Budget[edit]

Other administrative and logistic costs = $2500: Since I am not a professional accountant and the grant being applied for is large, there is a need for professional accounting services. There might be a need to pay for travel for trainers, food and certificates for participants in experiments, etc. Further, I was informed that some percentage of the funds will be deducted while wiring etc. I have put only an approximate cost.

Difficulty in postponing study to future time[edit]

I'd like to see the applicant flesh out their research a bit more (i.e. be at the stage where experimental design is well underway and/or completed) and then return with an updated proposal.

The new semester has just started at the University. While I will definitely work on expanding on the details as a first task in the next few weeks, I feel that it may not be productive to postpone the study to the next cycle as I am not sure what the future holds :) I hope you will agree.

Round 1 2016 decision[edit]

IEG IdeaLab review.png

This project has not been selected for an Individual Engagement Grant at this time.

We love that you took the chance to creatively improve the Wikimedia movement. The committee has reviewed this proposal and not recommended it for funding, but we hope you'll continue to engage in the program. Please drop by the IdeaLab to share and refine future ideas!


Next steps:

  1. Review the feedback provided on your proposal and to ask for any clarifications you need using this talk page.
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  3. To reapply with this project in the future, please make updates based on the feedback provided in this round before resubmitting it for review in a new round.
  4. Check the schedule for the next open call to submit proposals - we look forward to helping you apply for a grant in a future round.

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