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Information Technology in a Global Society - Is integrity a difficulty when students use Wikipedia to obtain information?

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Introduction

International Baccalaureate Information Technology in a Global Society Portfolio - 3 Is integrity a difficulty when students use Wikipedia to obtain information? (Education) July 2010 Word Count: Article: Does Wikipedia suck? "Insidehigherend" 26 March, 2010. <http://www.insidehighered.com/advice/instant_mentor/weir22>. Table of Contents: Criteria A Presentation of the Issue .............................................................. p.3 Criteria B The IT Background of the Issue........................................................p.4 Criteria C The impact of the issue ..................................................................p.5 Criteria D A solution to the problem arising .....................................................p.6 Works Cited ...............................................................................p. 7 News Article: Does Wikipedia suck? ...................................................................p. 8 Criteria A: Presentation of the Issue Wikis have become more popular among students over the years; they use it as a fast way to get information for their projects and other school related work. And very often the information on it is not accurate. One of the most popular wiki website is call Wikipedia.org. Even though are many good articles, Wikipedia.org like all wikis could be edited. Which means information on it can be inaccurate and sometimes there could even be completely false information. Many teachers realize that this is a problem with Wikipedia, and forbid their student to use it as a tool for their research. But students are still children and like all kids they don't tend to listen to what the teachers says. [Weir] Which they would still use Wikipedia.org as a resource which would add up to false information and a bad research. ...read more.

Middle

The algorithm would determine the probability of each word appearing on the page, and since the word pancakes didn't show up any where else in entry the algorithm saw this as something new and a possible graffiti on the page. Even though the tools has been develop, usual the tool would detect if major changes have been made, to help solve this solution on Wikipedia but non of them are as good as the one developed by the researchers from University of Iowa. Since after a test, the statistical language model algorithm caught more of the vandalism in some categories than existing tools. Until now this new tool has yet to be recognized by Wikipedia officials and use as a tool for their many vandalized pages. [Science Daily] Works Cited: Barrett, Daniel J <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Statistics>. O'Reilly "MediaWiki: Wikipedia and Beyond." O'Reilly Media - Technology Books, Tech Conferences, IT Courses, News. Web. 02 Dec. 2010. <http://oreilly.com/catalog/9780596519681>. Madder, Stewart. "Using Wikipedia in Education." Umontreal. Web. <https://wiki.umontreal.ca/download/attachments/3693/UsingWikiInEducation_StewartMader.pdf>. PHP "PHP: Basic Syntax - Manual." PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor. Web. 02 Dec. 2010. <http://www.php.net/manual/en/language.basic-syntax.php>. Science Daily. "Tool to Improve Wikipedia Accuracy Developed." Science Daily: News & Articles in Science, Health, Environment & Technology. Web. 02 Dec. 2010. <http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100924212131.htm>. Statistics "Wikipedia:Statistics." Wikipedia. Web. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Statistics>. Weir, By Rob. "Career Advice: Does Wikipedia Suck? - Inside Higher Ed." Home - Inside Higher Ed. ...read more.

Conclusion

I then asked them how they could evaluate all sources - electronic and print - in the same fashion as they judged Wikipedia. Within a week I had to but ask of any source "Is it sufficient?" in order to trigger thinking about evidence, logic, and data. This worked so well that I'm now contemplating ways to adapt the exercise for other courses. I'll probably reword some of the Nosich standards for history classes - the word "evidence" might make more sense than "precision," for example. I envision a short paper in which students compare topics they've just studied with Wikipedia entries. I'll probably theme it on what they learned versus what they failed to learn, ask students to speculate on why important exclusions occurred, and brainstorm on how historians use evidence and evaluate the sufficiency of a thesis. Of course, professors always harp on the need to evaluate the soundness of an argument and the quality of the sources used to advance it. To reiterate, though, the virtue in considering the assignment described above (or its equivalent) lies in self-discovery. It also gets students to think critically of sources they're going to consult whether we like them or not. Conclusions students reach on their own are likely to bear more weight than a professor's cautionary tales. If you worry about students relying too much on the Web, heed Abraham Lincoln's advice: "The best way to destroy an enemy is to make him a friend." http://www.insidehighered.com/advice/instant_mentor/weir22 ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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