Wiki Pedagogy: Using Wikis to Promote “Integration of Learning”

Jim Barber

Assistant Professor of Education
Higher Education Program
College of William and Mary

Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy
February 8, 2012
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, VA

View from our classroom at Charles University

Goals for Today:

  1. Introduce wiki format as a tool for teaching and learning
  2. Provide examples and resources
  3. Discussion

Abstract: Integration of learning is the ability to connect, apply, and/or synthesize information, knowledge and skills across varied contexts. The ability to integrate learning is a highly desirable outcome of higher education, and an increasingly sought after skill in the job market. Wikis are easily editable websites that allow multiple users to create sites that link content to any number of internal or external sources. The flexibility of the wiki format makes it an ideal tool for facilitating collaboration and promoting integration of learning. This presentation will demonstrate how a how a wiki can be used to promote integration of learning for college students, using a sample wiki from a summer 2011 study abroad course. During the course, students used the class wiki for a number of tasks, including writing both individual and co-authored essays, reviewing and contributing to one another’s work, connecting in-class discussions to out-of-class field excursions, and capturing personal reflections on field experiences. The pedagogy and tools have broad applicability in a variety of higher education settings, both classroom-based and experiential.