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Turning Introductory Comparative Politics and Elections Courses into Social Science Research Communities Using Wikipedia: Improving Both Teaching and Research

  • Ryan Kennedy (a1), Eric Forbush (a2), Brian Keegan (a3) and David Lazer (a4)
Abstract
ABSTRACT

This article advocates a lesson plan for introductory comparative politics and elections courses. The authors argue that Wikipedia (yes, Wikipedia) provides a unique platform for improving learning outcomes and a useful social good from traditional student papers on elections. The proposed lesson plan can achieve this in at least three ways: (1) by providing social incentives for learning and a method for students to contribute to social science knowledge from their earliest courses, the incorporation of Wikipedia editing can improve student learning and retention; (2) incorporating an online information component can help both future students and researchers by improving the quality and quantity of easily accessible and well-referenced information about historical and upcoming elections; and (3) the use of the Wiki format is becoming increasingly common in both business and government. Teaching the basics of editing is an increasingly useful skill for students to learn for future employment.

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This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Thomas Chesney . 2006. “An Empirical Examination of Wikipedia’s Credibility.” First Monday 11 (11). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5210%2Ffm.v11i11.1413.

Michelene T. Chi , Nicolas DeLeeuw , Mei-Hung Chiu , and Christian Lavancher . 1994. “Eliciting Self-Explanations Improves Understanding.” Cognitive Science 18 (3): 439–77.

Jim Giles . 2005. “Internet Encyclopedias Go Head to Head.” Nature 438:900901.

Lucy Holman Rector . 2008. “Comparison of Wikipedia and Other Encyclopedias for Accuracy, Breadth, and Depth in Historical Articles.” Reference Services Review 36 (1): 722.

Kurt VanLehn , Arthur C. Graesser , G. Tanner Jackson , Pamela Jordan , Andrew Olney , and Carolyn P. Rosé . 2007. “When Are Tutorial Dialogues More Effective than Reading?Cognitive Science 31 (1): 362.

Steve Wheeler , Peter Yeomans , and Dawn Wheeler . 2008. “The Good, the Bad, and the Wiki: Evaluating Student-Generated Content for Collaborative Learning.” British Journal of Educational Technology 39 (6): 987–95.

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PS: Political Science & Politics
  • ISSN: 1049-0965
  • EISSN: 1537-5935
  • URL: /core/journals/ps-political-science-and-politics
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