NASA/Apollo 17 crew; taken by either Harrison Schmitt or Ron Evans Public domain pic via Wikimedia Commons - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:The_Earth_seen_from_Apollo_17.jpg#file
By The original uploader was Mr. Absurd at English Wikipedia [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Universities offer an environment in which Wikipedia can thrive. As well as being a place that has higher than normal concentration of librarians and information professionals, it also has networks and nodes of people interested talking about and writing about just about every topic under the sun. there is also academic freedom in designing the curriculum.
the Wikipedia edit athon is a model which has found it’s tipping point moment.
Things happen slowly in higher education, but the value of those key opinion leading people, once they have been introduced to how rewarding an editathon can be, are increasingly hosting and organizing them themselves.
Photo from the University of Edinburgh's 'Women, Science, and Scottish History' editathon series, which ran during the University's Innovative Learning Week 2015, from 16-20 February 2015. The event was organised by the University of Edinburgh's Learning, Teaching, and Web Team, with support from the Moray School of Education, the University of Edinburgh Library, EDiNA, and Academic Support Librarians. Training run by Ally Crockford, Wikimedian in Residence at the National Library of Scotland. 'Changing the Ways the Stories are Told' - Melissa Highton speaking at the Wikipedia Science Conference - 3 September 2015. CC BY-SA 4.0 File:Wikipedia Science Conference - 2015-09 - Andy Mabbett - 25.JPG
The Edinburgh editathon.
By Mihaela Bodlovic Ewan McAndrew [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Pic of Ruth Jenkins, Academic Support Librarian at the University of Edinburgh Own work by Stinglehammer, CC-BY-SA By Stinglehammer [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], from Wikimedia Commons
By Stinglehammer [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], from Wikimedia Commons
Pics via Wikimedia Commons. Bessie Watson, CC-BY-SA See page for author [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons Sophia Jex-Blake See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons Annie Kenney, Emmeline Pankhurst and Mary Blathwayt planting a tree at Eagle House. By Colonel Linley Blathwayt [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons Eleanor Field at Royal Holloway Chemistry staff and students c.1899.jpg By Royal Holloway, University of London [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Blog post about the World Christianity assignment - http://www.cswc.div.ed.ac.uk/2017/01/world-christianity-wikipedia/#more-814
From Google Talk, December 2016 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESVQknHESuA
Pic of Periodic Table cupcakes at Ada Lovelace Day 2017 – via Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA Pic of Reproductive Biology students at the University of Edinburgh. Pic by Stinglehammer via Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA
Wikipedia pic by Giulia Forsyth via Wikimedia Commons By Giulia Forsythe (gforsythe) (flickr) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons
Abram, S. (2016). Political literacy can be learned! Internet@Schools, 23(4), 8-10. Retrieved from https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/docview/1825888133?accountid=10673
Academia and Wikipedia slides - 18 June 2018
Ewan McAndrew – Wikimedian in Residence
Email: email@example.com Twitter: @emcandre
"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things.
“Facebook defines who we are,
Amazon defines what we want
and Google defines what we
think.” (Broeder, 2016)
Zuckerberg may downplay Facebook’s role as “arbiters of truth” (Seethaman, 2016)
just as Google downplay their role as controllers of the library “card catalogue”
(Walker inToobin, 2015) but both represent the pre-eminent gatekeepers in the
“Wikipedia is today the gateway
through which millions of people
now seek access to knowledge.”
Why you can’t afford not to.
afford not to.
How is your institution demonstrating its
• Developing digital skills?
• Developing information literacy?
• Developing open educations resources?
• Addressing gender inequality?
• Open Knowledge?
• Open Science?
• Public Engagement with Research?
• Public Engagement with Collections?
• Improving the impact & dissemination of its research outputs?
Knowledge knows no bounds!
The future knows no bounds!
It is widely recognised that digital capabilities are a
key component of graduate employability
Wikimedian in Residence – Information Literacy &
Digital Skills at the University of Edinburgh
(CILIP and ARA
• To raise awareness of Wikipedia and its sister projects
• To design and deliver digital skills engagement events
• To work with colleagues all across the institution to find ways
to benefit from and contribute to the development of this
huge open knowledge resource. #OpenKnowledgeFTW
As a truly global university, rooted
in Scotland’s capital city, we make
a significant, sustainable and
socially responsible contribution to the world.
Wikipedia comes of
“I feel that it can play a vital role in
formal educational settings”
Chronicle of Higher Education
NLS – Gaelic
Women, Science & Scottish
Researched by Allison Littlejohn
The University of Edinburgh
residency began in Jan. 2016
+ NEW ROLE AT SLIC!!!! Supporting
Scottish Public Libraries and now a
Wikimedian at Stirling University
Archives now too.
Becoming a Wikipedia editor
Research by Allison Littlejohn
Melissa did a presentation on
Edinburgh 7 editathon at the
Wikipedia Science Conference
hosted by Martin Poulter.
“Becoming a Wikipedia editor: Perceived Roles and Responsibilities”
Research by Professor Allison Littlejohn
The Wikimedia residency:
Making connections across the university
History of Medicine,
Translation Studies, Veterinary
Online History MSc,
Scottish Studies Postgraduate
Certificate in Academic Practice
European Research Labs.
National Library of Scotland
National Galleries Scotland
University of Sheffield
Royal College of Physicians
Royal College of Physicians and
Global Health MSc
Data Science for Design
Law (Undergraduate & Postgrad)
Intellectual Humility MOOC
1. Scientific writers helping to cite UoE research on Wikipedia in
2. Open Access links added to existing (paywalled) citations on Wikipedia
and OA symbol added accordingly.
3. Building up a bibliographic repository of structured machine-readable
(and multilingual) linked open data on University of Edinburgh
researchers and research papers in Wikidata using the easy-to-use
suite of tools available.
Factors that helped with establishing the residency.
Getting colleagues across the university into the room in the first place.
185 STAFF TRAINED185 STAFF
Digital Sociology MSc
Global Health MSc
Data Science for Design MSC
A 2016 study found at least 87.5% of
students use Wikipedia for pre-research
purposes and find it “academically useful”
Timelines of engagement
Data Science for
• Wikidata showcase at Repository
Fringe Conference in August 2016.
• Wikidata & Histropedia showcase
events at the Open Knowledge
Network events. April 2017.
• Joe Corneli invites a Wikidata
project on the Data Science for
Design MSc in August 2017.
• September 2015 - 3 students
complete the Wikipedia write-
• September 2016 – all 38
students completed the write-
• September 2017 – all 51
students will complete the write
up (and course leaders now
looking at summative
Global Health MSc
• Gender,Global Health & Justice
editathon during February 2017
• Women in Anthropology
editathon for Usher Institute
researchers in May 2017.
• 200 word assignment in the
Global Health MSc course in
Ruth Jenkins – “We all know our students are using Wikipedia
and we’re all using it ourselves so I think being familiar with it is a
really important part of information literacy.”
Academic Support Librarian at the
• Went from not knowing how to edit.
• To helping others editing for work.
• To editing herself for fun.
• To preparing an editathon.
• To learning how to train others.
• To now taking to conference in July
for health information librarians (EAHIL)
1182 attendees at residency events. (815 more than in year 1).
425 new articles. 1800 improved articles.
If it’s on Wikipedia, it must be true.”
since September 2016
And she even created her own
open-licensed diagrams too!
Changing the way stories are told
(69% of our attendees this year were women).
• The Edinburgh Seven
• The Letter of 19 - women chemists who
petitioned the Chemistry Society in 1904
• The Eagle House suffragettes
World Christianity MSc – Wikipedia literature
review assignment (5% of course credit).
Representing a more holistic world view of
Translation from one language Wikipedia to another.
Independent Study module – Translation Studies MSc assignment
“It is very fun but challenging at the same
time. I feel like I am doing something very
It not only helps me with my translation
skills, but also makes me feel that I am
contributing to Wikipedia, to people, to the
society.“ – Student feedback
“After we analysed the data, we found we
learned the stories of the witches and we
learned about European culture especially
in the witchhunts.”
“We had wanted to do a happy
project but finally we learned much
more about these cultures so it was
very meaningful for us.” “In my opinion, it’s quite useful to put
learning practice into the real world so
that we can see the outcome and feel
proud of ourselves… we learned a lot.”
Students have been empowered
• The Translation Society
• The Law & Technology Society
• The Lost Literary Edinburgh event.
• The History Society and Black
• Mental Health Awareness event.
As a truly global university, rooted in Scotland’s capital city, we make a significant,
sustainable and socially responsible contribution to the world.
Wikimedia residency – Year 2
Edinburgh University, has significantly moved to embrace the residency and now
• As an asset in its annual report.
• As part of a 4 year action plan for meeting its
commitment to Athena SWAN increasing the
visibility of female role models.
• In planning discussions with Vice-Principal for how
to get greater public engagement with research.
• In discussions about funded projects to improve
University of Edinburgh reseach outputs to
Wikipedia and Wikidata.69% of our attendees
last year were women
in Year 3
• Wikipedia editing is embedded in the Digital
• ‘Train the Trainer’ workshops are a regular
component of the residency. Colleagues
across the university are now leading editing
training and editathon workshops.
• Focusing more on supporting data literacy
and developing data skills to meet emerging
needs of Scotland’s digital economy.
To 2019: A more strategic
”Establish a programme for enriching Wikipedia
/ Wikimedia with collection images, to support
teaching and public engagement” by July 2019
• Broader upload of images to Commons
• Wikipedia Content Audit
• Training programme
• Proactive linking of collections to external
• Ongoing experimentation with Wiki tools and
contribution to the community
Melissa Highton – Director of Learning, Teaching
and Web Services at the University of Edinburgh.
“Hosting a Wikimedian in Residence
(WiR) in a University has real potential
to target empowerment in learning
If you put your Wikimedian alongside
your digital skill trainers and learning
technologists their impact can be
10 Reasons to work
with Wikimedia UK
1. The new Visual Editor interface means Wikipedia editing is “super
easy”, “really intuitive”, “fun” and “highly addictive”.
2. Anyone can edit Wikipedia but there are checks and balances to help
revert unhelpful edits in minutes. (Only 7% of edits are considered
3. Wikidata – Teach data literacy. Query, analyse & visualise the largest
reference work on the internet. Surface and link your research data.
4. WikiCite – tidying up the citations on Wikipedia to make a consistent,
queryable bibliographic repository enhancing the impact of research.
5. Wikisource – Quotations and images from long ago can still touch and
inspire. Out of copyright texts such as digitised PhD theses can be
uploaded & linked to from Wikipedia; enhancing discoverability.
6. Content Translation – Students help build understanding between
languages while getting meaningful published translation practice.
7. The gender gap is real and working with Wikipedia helps address this
as part of Athena Swan initiatives in STEM fields.
8. Develop students’ digital skills. The practical application of research &
communication skills aid students’ comprehension and employability.
9. Surface your research & library collections’ material to Wikidata,
Wikipedia, Wiki Commons, Wikisource and open them up to a global
Open Knowledge community of millions.
10. “Search is the way we live now”. Engaging with Wikipedia helps
develop a critical approach to its usage and to other online sources of
information, helping research skills and combating fake news.
Staff and students are already consulting
Wikipedia for pre-research purposes (at least
87.5% of them) so why not ensure gaps in
representation and inaccuracies are addressed?
Because if not you then who?
2,100 images of
monuments were added
to Commons last year.
1,350 by staff at the
“Wikimedia Commons has revolutionised the availability of HIGH QUALITY open
images of historic buildings”.
Natasha Vall, Urban Historian at Teesside University
Wikimedian in Residence
Tel: +44 (0) 7719 330076
The creation, dissemination and
curation of knowledge
The University of Edinburgh
3 Lady Lawson Street
Edinburgh EH3 9SH
The new WYSIWYG Visual Editor interface makes editing
“super easy”, “fun”, “really intuitive” and “addictive as hell.”
2. Bold / italic
3. Bullet point
4. Internal links
5. Citations &
All edits are recorded in the View History tab
in permanent links
Bots patrol for predicable
vandalism and instantly
Only 7% of edits considered
vandalism study finds.
Pages ‘looked after’ by
editors volunteering on a
variety of WikiProjects.
4 day rule for new
DON’T CITE WIKIPEDIA, WRITE WIKIPEDIA!
The 21st century skills that a collaboration between the University of
Edinburgh and Wikimedia UK help develop include:
• A critical Information Literacy
• Digital Literacy
• Academic writing & referencing
• Critical thinking
• Literature review
• Writing for different audiences.
• Research skills
• Communication skills
• Community building / Online citizenship
“Students have said that simply knowing that
an audience of editors existed was enough to
change how they wrote.
They chose words more carefully. They
double-checked their work for accuracy and
And they began to think about how best they
could communicate their scholarship to
readers who were as curious, conscientious,
and committed as they were.”
Our Youtube channel has
received over 34,000 views
Viewed by 165 countries
around the world.
• Wikimedia’s online library of
digitised, out of copyright texts
• Uploaded a digitised PhD, Some
Problems in Variation and Heredity
by Thomas Jehu
• Fully OCR-ed and transcribed
• Page viewed 196 times on
Wikisource compared with 11
downloads from UoE repository
The Celtic Knot
• Held on 6 July 2017
• 53 attendees
• Focused on supporting
Celtic and Indigenous language
The second Celtic Knot is taking
place 5-6 July 2018 at the
National Library of Wales with
an expanded 2 day programme.
Creating a new data literate workforce to
support Scotland’s growing digital economy.
Did media literacy backfire?
“Too many students I met were being told that Wikipedia was
untrustworthy and were, instead, being encouraged to do
As a result, the message that many had taken home was to turn to
Google and use whatever came up first.
They heard that Google was trustworthy and Wikipedia was not.”
Danah Boyd (Jan. 2017)
Email Wikimedia UK: firstname.lastname@example.org
1) Wikipedia Basics
2) Wikidata Basics
3) Wikisource Basics
4) Wiki Games
5) How to run an editathon
241 videos and video tutorials.
WIKI RESOURCES –
Download the slides to play: http://bit.ly/WikiGames
“Wikipedia is the single greatest Open Education resource the world has ever seen”
• The fifth most popular website in the world.
• 120,000 regular contributors (of which only 3455
or so are considered ‘very active’ Wikipedians).
• 500 million visitors every month.
• Visited by 1.5 billion unique devices every month.
• Trusted more than the BBC, ITV, the Times, theTelegraph,
The Guardian and more according to Yougov survey (2014).
“Knowledge is alive and growing and… it is
most useful when it is used; not just static, but
engaged with, built upon, expanded on.”
Katherine Maher, Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation
Making the residency sustainable
• Trained 20+ Wikimedia ambassadors.
• Mixture approach of people and process.
• Created and curated 248 Creative
Commons licensed videos and video
tutorials on the Media Hopper channel.
• Collected resources. Developed & shared
reusable case studies and lesson plan
• Continuing to train & host events for
• Embedding Wikipedia in Digital Skills.
• Ensuring tools/platforms are robust and
•“Wikipedia is today the gateway
through which millions of people
now seek access to knowledge.”
• (William Cronon)
The latest estimates by Crossref
show that Wikipedia has risen from
the 8th most prolific referrer to
DOIs to the 5th (at least)
• Intellectual humility is a virtue, a character trait that allows the
intellectually humble person to think and reason well.
• It is plausibly related to open-mindedness, a sense of one's own
fallibility, and a healthy recognition of one's intellectual debts to
Are we in academia open-minded to Wikipedia?
“SEARCH IS THE WAY WE LIVE NOW”
GOOGLE and WIKIPEDIA
• Google depends on Wikipedia. Click through
rate decreases by 80% if links to Wikipedia are
• Wikipedia depends on Google. 84.5% of visits to
Wikipedia are attributable to Google.
• Google processed 91% of searches
internationally and 97.4% of searches from
mobile devices. (2011 figures).
• Google has a “funnelling effect” – The sources
clicked on are reduced to the 1st page of results
90% of the time.
• With 42% click through on first choice alone.
There is agency to
”This challenge is not just for
school librarians to prepare the next
generation to be informed
but for all librarians
to assist the whole population.”
Abram, S. (2016). Political literacy can be learned!