Talk:Wikipedia & Education User Group

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Welcome to out Talk Page!

Please feel free to open a new thread if you have any questions, or if you'd like to take on a task.

Frequently Asked Questions & Answers[edit]

Since submitting our application for the Wikipedia & Education User Group, we’ve received various questions about our goals and intentions. The following Q & A is meant to help clarify our mission and relations with other affiliates in the movement. Please feel free to add questions if you have ones, and we'll be sure to answer them as soon as we can. Best, Shani Evenstein. 11:36, 3 December 2017 (UTC)

Q: Does the User Group’s work clash with chapters and affiliates?
A: No. We aim to enhance that work and make sure that common needs across affiliates globally are heard and dealt with.

Q: How will the WMF’s education team be involved? How will the education team determine who to send new contacts to?
A: That is a question for the WMF’s education team. What we can say is that we have worked and will continue to work in full collaboration and transparency with all parties involved, both the WMF team and other affiliates, in order to advance Education programs around the world.

Q: How is what we’re doing different from what the WMF education team is doing?
A: The WMF education team consists of 3 people, who cannot be expected to support everything that is happening globally. They have considerably less experience running programmatic activities on the ground, compared with volunteers around the world who have been running educational collaborations and can offer support both as mentors and as a source of shared resources. Moreover, the WMF Education team has a limited budget, which to date does not cover the global education needs of the movement, especially not when it comes to technological infrastructure, such as developing the Programs & Events Dashboard; nor do they create new resources that could be used globally. These are all areas in which the UG can complement and enhance what the WMF Education team is already doing, as written above, in collaboration with them and with other affiliates.

Q: Will the User Group be doing programmatic work?
A: Not initially, but we’re not saying no. We don’t intend to do local work, but in the future we might want to facilitate collaborations with global, like-minded organizations, such as the UN & UNESCO. The stress here is on facilitating, as the way we envision it, collaborating with global organizations will translate to local activities. To that end, we will be using our global network within the movement, to coordinate and support that work locally by affiliates who choose to collaborate. In this, it is not different than work done by WikiProject Medicine Foundation UG or the Wikipedia Library UG that facilitate global collaborations, which are then translated to local work in collaboration with other affiliates.

Q: What is the membership model? Who can join the group?
A: That is something for the UG to decide on as it becomes a formal affiliate, but our initial thoughts are that a “member” could be anyone who actively contributes to Wiki in Education initiatives around the world and shares our vision and goals and wants to invest time in these global needs.

Updated answer to AffCom's request:
Anyone who is committed to the field of Wikimedia in Education, as well as people interested in getting involved in it, are welcome to share in and participate in the co-creation of knowledge. We wish that members will endeavor to share what they are learning on the field and take advantage of the sharing that is done within the group, the movement and the field of education.
Expected participation:There will be regular and special events where all members are invited to discuss common challenges that relate directly to the Education component of the movement. While participation is not compulsory, active participation is strongly encouraged. Support will be provided to new members by encouraging active mentorship when needed or requested.
The formal process of becoming a member before the UG is approved, requires registering in the group’s meta page, inserting a username. After the UG is formally approved and a board is elected, a “membership admin” will be assigned. Members will be asked to fill out a membership form with personal details, so the UG can track its members formally. The membership admin will be responsible to review new applications, send a welcome message, register new members to the mailing list etc.
Individual Program Leaders, Soon-to-be education program leaders, and education specialists that are staff of Affiliates are welcome to join and participate in the experience sharing and knowledge building of the group.

Q: What’s the governance of the User Group?
A: That is an important decision that will be determined only once the User Group is officially formed, in order to allow as many people as possible to participate in the process. We do not feel comfortable making decisions about issues such as governance at this moment, as they might be superseded once the User Group is formally established.

Updated answer to AffCom's request:
General Assembly, which takes place online, involves all members of the user group. All members of the user group are eligible to nominate themselves, even if they are members of other affiliates in the movement or employees of affiliates.
After the nomination period, elections will be held. Members will cast their votes for members of the board on a dedicated Meta page. The 5 members with most votes will become the User Group’s board members. In the case of a tie, a new vote is cast by the general assembly among the members that are tied, until a majority of votes can be identified.
Board members will be elected for a period of 2 years. The elected board will be responsible to run the next elections and will announce elections publicly.
Role and responsibilities of the Board:
  • The Board is the decision-making organ of the User Group, and coordinates activities for the User Group, in collaboration with other members.
  • The board will hold monthly (or bi-monthly) online meetings, after which decisions will be published on-wiki, except those where delicate, personal affairs are discussed.
  • The Board will elect internally the following roles:
    • Chairperson
    • Secretary
    • Treasurer
    • Membership admin
  • The Board will publish an annual report as required by all WMF affiliates.

Q: Who will set global strategic direction for the User Group?
A: Once the UG is officially formed, we will choose a governing body. This body will work on setting strategic yearly goals, in collaboration with interested members of the organization.

Q: User Groups are usually geographic rather than thematic. Why is there a need for a global thematic group?
A: Mainly because although most of the work is done locally and will continue to be so, there are similar needs across the world, and to-date, those needs are usually not being met.

Task: Logo design[edit]

I can take this task. Justine.toms. Justine.toms (talk) 12:48, 6 June 2017 (UTC)

Wonderful. Thanks for your willingness to help, Justine. We'll start working on that after we announce and other people have a chance to sign up. :) Best, Shani Evenstein 19:06, 7 June 2017 (UTC)

Task: Determine communication channel(s)[edit]

I can help here. Justine.toms. Justine.toms (talk) 12:48, 6 June 2017 (UTC)

Wonderful, again! Thanks. Let's see who else is interested and you can form a working group. Best, Shani Evenstein 19:06, 7 June 2017 (UTC)
Justine.toms,Shani Evenstein i can also help in Communication Channels particularly to make Collaboration with Others about Education Outreach. And i think we should create a new strategy regarding this. Thanks. Mohammed Galib Hasan (talk) 14:13, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
Certainly. This is part of what needs to happen this year. For now, we first need to be recognized as a user groupץ When that happens, we can divide into user groups and start working on specific *global* topics. Best, Shani Evenstein 18:04, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

Task: Determine governance[edit]

This is of course a task that should involve many members, especially the founding organizers of the UG. I am happy to help with this work, hoping that many members sign up. --Joalpe (talk) 14:51, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

Count me in as being interested. I was one of the original Collab members when that started several years ago in Prague.Thelmadatter (talk) 15:23, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
I'm guessing that the work on governance will be one of the first tasks of the future board. --FiliP ██ 18:25, 17 August 2018 (UTC)

Education Lunch @ Wikimania 2017[edit]

I captured some rough notes and context from the lunch that happened on Sunday, August 13, 2017. Please feel free to correct anything that is misrepresented! I didn't attribute any comments.

Introductions Participants from : Iceland, US, Ecuador, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Argentina, Ivory Coast, UK, Sweden, Iran (didn’t capture specific names/users, sorry!)

Review Mission and Goals from Meta page No immediate comments on the mission.

Reviewing the goals

  • Advocacy
    • Win-win-win is too simplistic. There are lots of pros and cons for each participant (institution, teacher, community)
    • Add point about impact on the projects — actually are contributing in significant quality and quantity in terms of content, especially around internal advocacy
    • Advocating for the important impact that we are all doing at the local level. We as an educaiton movement have an impact on the broader movement. We’re stronger together.
  • Securing and distributing resources
    • learning exchange bit sounds a bit like education collab?
    • Focus on tools, access to resources
    • Creating a shared central resource collection that individual program leaders can use to meet their needs. One of the challenges is looking at the role of the local individual or affiliate. The goal of this group is to provide resources/tools that can be localized, to support local efforts
    • Example of using Israel’s rubric, that was then translated into spanish by WMAR, which could then be used in Ecuador
    • Missing the purpose: furthering the goals of the chapters and local groups. Making this clearer would be helpful.
    • Create and share practical instructional resources that help affiliates and individuals scale and grow the efficacy of their goals.
    • Assumes there is a center? Is there no central budget? Perhaps too precise and makes assumptions about where this goes?
    • One of the struggles has been there is concern that chapters feel threatened that this group will start running programs. This group will be a network that is supportive of existing work, and help anyone that wants to start a new program
    • For example as an education manager in a chapter I run programs, important to clarify the different experiences
    • The goal of the group so far has been under knowledge exchange, the implementation has been a role for the local level, be they individuals or affiliates
    • Concern about being too precise, could be a writing issue, having text that helps us without limiting us in 5 years
    • Important that there is a difference (around “facilitation”), the rules of establishing a user group also need some more precision/focus around what the group intends to do
  • Exchange of ideas
    • Where will this project be? Outreach, Meta? Something to figure out at some point
    • “Offer support” (Mentoring) from previous goal could be placed here instead? Perhaps it’s directing people to resources?
    • About the Collab? The Collab is “dead.”
    • Exchange of ideas and “good practice”? That could be added
    • Learn from the post-mortem of the collab? To see how that learning exchange can work better
      • Maybe there are things that worked well? Things that didn’t? Something that we can look at

General points

  • Make sure we hear from non-native English speakers, who can dominate in person discussion
  • Make sure this conversation happens outside this lunch, since it’s not a fully representative group

Things going forward, ideas for participation

  • Contribute to the newsletter a few times a year. One way to commit communicating what we’re doing
  • There could be a time when the group takes over the newsletter; Nichole currently produces the monthly newsletter
  • Newsletter touches an important subject area, when I talk to people at Wikimania, people are not aware of the impact of what we doing in the education part of the movement. Newsletter is a way to share information amongst the group. What are the ways of getting this information out movement, push out in existing channels? What’s the most effective channel? Perhaps the WMF Blog? We need to do more storytelling, it seems. Any other ideas?
  • External outlets beyond the movement about education? Good idea to do WMF Blog, but places with more readership?
  • Blog? Signpost? How do you get your information about what other people in other countries are doing?
  • Newsletters or blogs can be boring. More of the same. What we need more is not informing, but a kind of journalism, essays, innovation. Not just what has been done, but perhaps a human interest story?
  • More use of social media? Twitter, get followed by higher ed
  • Case study, how do we reach the members of the Aff Com more effectively to reach our goals? Facebook? Whatever helps, let’s do that
  • Community news: find it valuable to within the community, would like to see it come more form the community and get more ownership
  • Who are the stakeholders? Answer that question, then you know where you want to be.
  • Multiple channels, it’s a lot of work. If they don’t use FB to seek out news, it’s their loss
  • How this can help us in doing in person communication. The things we hear and see from others, we make use of that knowledge. Okay, on every topic, something on the program and how education can fill diversity gaps. How can this group help us in each of our countries and contexts to reach out to find potential partners. To make sure that our way of thinking is heard in different venues where education is discussed?
  • Monthly online meetings via hangout? One way to keep communication flowing. Make sure that as many people as possible can make it, one way to have exchange on a regular basis.
    • Not what I’m looking for. How to reach partners? Do you need stock language, templates?
    • There should always be something about education when we’re talking about Wikipedia in our country
    • How can we help one another showing the benefits of Wiki in Education
    • Perhaps working groups on different standards that align to programs? 21st century skills
  • IberoCoop has a map with different points where you can find what’s going on in education
    • Countries page on Outreach not meet that need?
  • There are some insights from This Month in GLAM: before subscribing I didn’t have a clear idea of types of GLAM collaboration. Monthly newsletter had a tremendous impact on learning from others around the world. Each month you also have to tell your story to the world. First it connects you to the overall project, but at the end of the month you have to tell what you did that month, making it visible, motivation.
  • Every time we attend a conference or do an outreach activity (workshop, etc) and something happened in a specific field, trying to write a blog post. Sharing learnings and redistribute the report or the blog post to spread the word, don’t have to re-write content again.
  • Education conference? In person meet ups? Monthly call?
    • Showcase and do outreach to local teachers as well
    • 2011 conference in Boston; brought instructors and Wikipedians together; look at the strategic direction of the Wikimedia movement, building bridges; building a bridge between Wikipedia and academic institutions, could be a good way of building bridges.
    • Satellite event in figure international events?
  • Important dates coming up
  • Rotating hosts for meetings? Timezone bias tends to be North American
  • As group grows, may need spaces for face-to-face meetings
  • Look to see what the Wikipedia Library is doing. Have they solved this problem? Can we learn from them? Look to other groups within the movement that are also networks

Other thoughts, comments?

  • November, conference in Brazil, research conference, can submit abstracts until the end of August.
  • Current status? Waiting for Aff Com approval, ongoing process. Stay tuned!


  • New mailing list for the user group?
  • Facebook as a channel for organizing the group. Possible to consider alternatives for those not on Facebook

Corrections and additions are welcome! Tighe Flanagan (WMF) (talk) 17:57, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

Wikipedia & Education UG Next Steps: Call for a Meeting[edit]

Dear all, During Wikimania, representatives from the "Wikipedia & Education User Group" organizing team have met with AffCom.
AffCom members made some suggestions regarding the formation of our group, and though we haven't heard from them officially yet,
we believe their suggestions requires a wider discussion with all interested parties and potential members of the group.
The meeting agenda will focus on next steps, governance, membership and the group's name and will last 1.5 hours.
I have set up a doodle to schedule this meeting. Please fill it out by next Tuesday, August 29th.
By Wed the 30th I'll announce the final date and will send out an invite link for all interested.
Best, Shani (on behalf of the organizing team). Shani Evenstein 09:56, 23 August 2017 (UTC)
PS - this message has been posted on the education mailing list, as well as the Wikipedia & Education FB group to ensure maximum reach & participation.

Dear all, our meeting has been scheduled for this coming Wednesday, September 6th, between 1500-1630 UTC. Here is a link to the hangout. See you all soon, Shani Evenstein. 19:20, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
Tried to join several times, but kept getting the "This video call is full" message -- FULBERT (talk) 15:52, 6 September 2017 (UTC)
FULBERT, sorry to hear that. In the future we'll be using a platform that allows for up to 50 participants, so this shouldn't be an issue going forward. Shani Evenstein. 21:08, 11 November 2018 (UTC)


I added my name with organizers because i am initiative and interested to be with organizers because i am leading one of the biggest Arab education programs at hashemite university in jordan and i established it from zero until it is now supported financially by the university and well institutionalized as student club at deanship of students affairs but actually i don't know if i do correct by adding my name because i read at the top "Sign up below to join us in organizing"? Or should i request for adding it. BTW TFlanagan-WMF (talk · contribs) knows about my activity and initiatives and I want really to help and joining you here because education program take large amounts of my attention and time. i suggested to my user group to support this user group creation--مصعب (talk) 22:25, 25 April 2018 (UTC) @Esh77: regards--مصعب (talk) 21:39, 14 May 2018 (UTC)

Hello, مصعب. Nice to e-meet you and great to learn about your program in Jordan. You are very much welcome as a member of the forming User Group. All you need to do is sign your name under "members". When AffCom approves this UG (fingers crossed!), we will hold elections. Then you are welcome to nominate yourself to be one of the board members. Till then, we run things together. Best, Shani Evenstein. 15:50, 29 May 2018 (UTC)

Wikipedia & Education User Group: First meeting![edit]

Dear all, now that the Wikipedia & Education User Group has been officially approved and Wikimania is over, it's time to jump-start our activity and start working together again. Exciting, I know! :) To do that, we'd like have an online meeting, where we will share updates and will determine our next steps as a user group, the first of which would be to start an election process to choose a board for our user group. Here's a link to a doodle which will help us determine a time for a meeting. As we are an international crowd, an effort was made to include time slots that might work for different places in the world simultaneously. You should be seeing this in your own time zone. Please vote on the best dates & times for you by next Wednesday, August 15 at midnight (whenever that is :)). A final date will be announced on Thursday, August 16. Who is invited to participate in the meeting? Anyone who's doing work around Wikipedia and its sister projects & Education is invited, no matter where they are from, or from which group or chapter. As long as participants are polite, friendly and ready to work with others, they are welcome! Shani Evenstein. 16:14, 10 August 2018 (UTC)

Dear all, The meeting has been set to Friday, August 17th (tomorrow!), between 17:00-19:00 UTC, which was the date and time most participants of the doodle chose. Here's a link to the hangout. See you tomorrow! Shani Evenstein. 11:55, 16 August 2018 (UTC)
@Esh77: Error with the link Blue Rasberry (talk) 13:48, 16 August 2018 (UTC)
@Bluerasberry: how about now? Shani Evenstein. 14:39, 16 August 2018 (UTC)
Seems fixed... thanks. Blue Rasberry (talk) 15:00, 16 August 2018 (UTC)


  • Board election
  • Mapping campaign
  • New tools: Dashboard / new?

Elections to the Board[edit]

Dear all, the elections to the board will run till September 30th 2018. Anyone who is a supporter of the User Group can vote here, so please do! Your voice matters. Good luck to all the nominees! Shani Evenstein. 09:02, 22 September 2018 (UTC)

Election results[edit]

The results from the election are available in his page. The newly elected board is (till December 2020):

Learning Quarterly: November 2018[edit]

L&E Newsletter / Volume 5 / Issue 17 / November 2018
Learning Quarterly

Stay tuned
blogs, events
& more!

MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 01:10, 29 November 2018 (UTC)