Shane Gero shane.gero at bios.au.dk
Thu Aug 27 02:09:41 PDT 2015

To all Biennial Attendees,

Now that everyone has heard about their abstract assignments for the SMM conference in San Francisco, I know everyone is frantically looking over the list of amazing workshops – WELL LOOK NO FURTHER!

You want to attend this one: Wikipedia as a tool for outreach, open access science, and in the classroom

This biennial workshop is presented by the Society’s Education Committee and Wiki Education Foundation. It has been sponsored by the Society for Marine Mammalogy to reduce the cost of the ½ day workshop to only $20!

This is a great workshop for:

1)    Faculty wanting a new pedagogic approach,

2)    Early-career scientists looking for new tools to distinguish themselves,

3)    Those interested in outreach and public access to science, and

4)    Those looking to increase their digital literacy in new media.

Workshop Description:

Wikipedia is viewed over 5 billion times a day and is the 7th most visited site on the internet globally. In most searches, Wikipedia is the #1 result returned for most marine mammal common and latin binomial names, and for the term marine mammal<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marine_mammal>. As a result the public accesses content on Wikipedia about diverse topics from Whaling<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whaling> to the effects of climate change on marine mammals<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effects_of_climate_change_on_marine_mammals> on a daily basis. For example, the article on blue whales<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_whales> has been viewed over 66,000 times in the last 30 days!

A common complaint of many scientists is that Wikipedia is not a well-grounded reference for information. Nonetheless, the people; including students, the media, and government officials; accesses information about marine mammal behavior, species facts, conservation issues, and taxonomy online every day. This issue is that contemporary knowledge about marine mammal species and conservation issues in the primary research literature is disparate, difficult to read and access, and not always free or open access.

As the premier international society for understanding marine mammals and their interactions with their environment and humans, the Society for Marine Mammalogy<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Society_for_Marine_Mammalogy> is committed to providing the most up-to-date information about these species to the public.

This workshop run in conjunction by the Wiki Education Foundation and the SMM Education Committee will will demonstrate how Wikipedia can be used as a teaching tool in the classroom, as a method for building digital literacy, and as a method to increase the free access to accurate scientific information.

Wiki in your classroom:  The Wiki Education Foundation was established to serves as the bridge between academia and Wikipedia. Since 2010, educators participating in the program have assigned their students to add content to course-related articles on Wikipedia. Students gain key 21st century skills like media literacy, writing and research development, and critical thinking, while content gaps on Wikipedia get filled thanks to students’ efforts.

Wiki as a tool for Digital Literacy:  The internet, and Wikipedia itself, is by far the first source of knowledge accessed by the public. Evaluating this quality and content of this information is critical competency for this generation of students. Furthermore, contributing content allows students to evaluate and assess articles online, a central part of learning to be a scientist. As contributors, they learn to summarize and concisely communicate information from reliable primarily literature sources. A key to being a clear scientific communicator is the ability to communicate complex ideas at a lay level.

Wiki as a tool for Open Access:  Wikipedia pages are viewed thousands of times a day by the public. Expert edits on Wikipedia increase the free access to current information about scientific fields, controversies in popular perception, and increases the level of public understanding. Expert content links primary scientific literature with the public.

The workshop will cover:
1) The basic functions, coding, and use of Wikipedia itself
2) The specific course content and support available from Wiki Education Foundation to educators who use Wikipedia
3) As a practical exercise, the attendees will participate in the 3rd SMM Wikisprint to update, correct and improve the content on Wikipedia about marine mammal science.

See you all there,
The Organizers Shane Gero<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:ShaneGero> (shane.gero at bios.au.dk)  and Jami Mathewson<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Jami_%28Wiki_Ed%29> (WikiEd)

Shane Gero, Ph.D.
FNU Research Fellow
Marine Bioacoustics Lab<http://www.marinebioacoustics.com/>
Institute for Bioscience
Aarhus University

[home-icon20]<http://whitelab.biology.dal.ca/sge/> [Twitter_2012_bird_icon 20] <https://twitter.com/sgero>  [linkedin_logo20] <http://ca.linkedin.com/in/shanegero>

Learn more about The Dominica Sperm Whale Project at http://www.thespermwhaleproject.org<http://www.thespermwhaleproject.org/> Find us on Facebook<https://www.facebook.com/spermwhaleproject> or Follow @DomWhale<https://twitter.com/DomWhale>

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