Monday, July 27, 2009


I now have an understanding of what a WIKI is, but I am still confused as to what to really use it for in the classroom. I find WIKI's busy and confusing, with too many tabs and options, like a large overcoat with too many pockets. Personally, I find using Google Docs much easier and user friendly. The one difference that I can see is that you can upload personal effects like pictures and videos to a WIKI.
However, in saying this, they fit into the Engagement Theory perfectly as they are "providing an authentic setting for learning" (Kearsley & Shneiderman, 1999). WIKI's are a magnet for collaborative learning, with many people having access to it and contributing to it. "A Wiki is a powerful tool for constructivist learning environments because it facilitates collaboration" (Notari, 2006).
They are, naturally, project based, and can then be used to create a project on top of their natural function. An example of this could be a class trip to Parliament House. In the lead up to the trip, the teacher could put information and links there for both parents and students, even a 'what to bring' list. During the trip, photos and videos could be taken and then uploaded as a way of showing parents and reflecting on the trip. In the aftermath of the trip, students could be asked to write a report on Parliament House and place it there, again as a way to show parents and the wider community.
However, there is one part in all of this that bothers me - internet safety. A WIKI is exactly that - a tool that anyone can access to create data, and change that same data. I would be worried that cyber bullying could occur through WIKI's, and there are also the ethical considerations as well. I like the ease and privacy of Google Docs, so I am sticking to it.

- Kearsley, G. & Shneiderman, B. (1999), The Engagement Theory. Retrieved July 13, 2009, from
- Notari, M. (2007). How to use a Wiki in education. Retrieved July 27, 2009, from

1 comment:

Scot said...

Hi Chenoa,

The Google docs vs WIKIs offer different options. WIKIs can be configured with a wide range of permissions that prevent unwanted users entering that space. WIKIs like Wikispaces also offer secure areas with additional security.

The bonus with WIKIs is that each page can be edited by anyone with permission and reverted quickly in the case of online vandalism.