How can we use wikis in education?

  1. Use wikis to write ordinary books that teachers can use, print, copy, and improve. See WikiBook?.
  2. Use wikis as a tool to allow persistent knowledge accumulation (copies of old exams, answers to questions, comments on courses); the smallest unit can be a single class, the largest unit would be an entire school.
  3. The tool is transformational course material. First, wiki can provide a presentation alternative to powerpoint or other media; then, it can be edited in class by the group (student makes insightful comment, teacher adds info to pages) or student adds additional reference or information. Finally, if online, it serves as notes to refer back to. Potentially, the next year of the course could continue to develop the course material.

This page is about using wikis in school.

  1. Wikis can be a simple content management tool for teachers, allowing them to create webpages with text material and excercises for their students with very little effort.
  2. Wikis can be an environment where students learn how to use web technology while doing something as simple as handing in their homework. Slowly they get used to writing structured text and linking to other pages.
  3. Wikis can be a playful environment where groups such as classes or clubs get to maintain their first online presence.
  4. Wikis teach students about SoftSecurity: How to lead people to collaboration and constructive behaviour.

What kind of projects are available?

  1. Start writing one of the books?
  2. Write a 5-20 page brochure (on a wiki?) for teachers to use. This brochure must target teachers and the pedagogic lingo they expect.
  3. Write a course program for wiki school. See WikiSchool Basic Course.
  4. Helping students to understand complexities of issues, current events, really anything. Have them do a class research project in which the class brainstorms topics and decides on one then they brainstorm different angles to think about the subject. Those go into a hat and then each student gets a topic of the subject and has to write about it.

Some wiki already related to education:


I moved our first discussion to WikiSchoolDiscussion (to refactor) ?

Alex and Lion : I hope you don’t mind a light drop on MeatBall:WikiSchool ? Please feel free to refactor this MobileContent on mb. Could we imagine any experience of giving WikiSchool a multi-wiki basis project status ?

The idea sounds interesting, I look forward to following what you all do. By WikiSchool though are you meaning “a wiki training class” or the more general idea of “learning via wikis” (as opposed to learning in traditional classrooms, etc.)? Sounds like the former one, I just wasn’t sure.

A concrete case, a concrete possibility for an application of wiki: Some university students can not attend certain lectures because they have jobs to do. Other students attend the lectures and record these on dictaphone to type a script of them at home. The scripts are partly very seeked after and I heard about cases where such are even sold amongst students. Talking about wiki to a student supporting the idea of publishing such scripts for free common use I realized that it could perfectly be done on a wiki. Some universities I assume will already offer wiki to their students, many will in general support it when their students collaborate. Many universities offer free access to the internet for their students. The general level of capabilities on using computers and the internet is comparably high among university students.
Apart of that: I like the term multi-wiki based project. It sounds powerful.

later on 29.2.04: (thanks to LionKimbro there is the inofficial Wiki of the University Ca’ Foscari of Venice, Italy now. Let’s see what happens.

I tried an experiment using a wiki during a group tutorial. Of course it was the first time anyone had seen a wiki… I tried to give the wiki structure, and also tried to ‘prompt’ responses. I also used the first-person’I’ language, and I’m not sure if this might possible hinder collaboration within the main text of the site… well, anyway, there’s lots to think about. Here it is;, I used usemod.

I’d be interested to hear if anyone was using wikis as a synchronous collaboration tools during lecture or classtime. - HeatherJames

All I can say that there was no paper presented on the use of wikis at Web Based Communities 2004 whereas there were tons of papers on learning communities, universities as life-long learning communities, weblogs as learning tools, etc. We definitely need some research in this area. 😊 And then we should write a paper for Web Based Communities 2005!

I also found some German resources via MeatBall:WikiSchool, btw. I spent some time reading Beat Doebeli’s report of wiki use in the classroom. [1]

The University of Toronto uses a lot of TWikis and MoinMoins in the CS department. Feedback so far has been predictable. Bemidji University is much further along in this respect. I’m supposed to get the McLuhan program hooked up here at some point, and that might lead to a paper. – SunirShah

I’m in the process of setting up some educational wikis at, including one specifically about using wikis at (I’ll probably change the “wikiclassroom” name soon when DNS updates work again for me. Anyone have a better suggestion for the name?)

Please feel free to add your own ideas to the site. You guys are the WikiMasters. 😊 It’s meant to be another collaborating site related to this WikiSchool idea.

Thanks to LionKimbro for helping me with planning these sites. Someone should give him a BarnStar or something, I think. 😉


A colleague and I are going to cross-collaborate. She is working on a wiki project for distance collaborations, and I will be using it in face-to-face collaboration. So it’s been great comparing notes and bouncing ideas off each other. I should mention, these are short, exploratory projects- to build on next year in a long term project.

To start, I would like to do a SWOT* analysis of wikis (and I’m thinking of wikis en general not just for classroom!) I could do this on my own, but it doesn’t seem to make sense, in light of the nature of the subject. Where would be a good location for this? Anywhere here? I’d like to open it up to ppl outside of edu as well. - HeatherJames

*SWOT = Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats …

You are welcome to do it on this wiki; I think it is on-topic. 😊 – AlexSchroeder

Thank you Alex, I’m such a goofy kid. I’m sitting here wondering where a WikiSWOT page should ‘go’, where it should ‘be’… when all I must do is link to it- and at some point, if it needs a home, I’m sure it will find a place and be linked to where relevant. And I don’t even have to know where yet.

Ahh… wiki. wiki. *wiki*

Helmut Leitner offers a school wiki per nation on GründerWiki:GratisWikisFürSchulen?. Apply now!

There are some papers about wikis in education. I have collected some links on



Define external redirect: BrianLamb WikiBook CategoryWikiSchool UbcWiki EdTechWiki DougHolton GratisWikisFürSchulen

EditNearLinks: BarnStar MoinMoin SunirShah


The same page elsewhere: