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Page history last edited by Larissa Olesova 14 years ago







What is a wiki?

As defined in Wikipedia, a wiki "is a website that allows the easy creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser [Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari...] using a simplified ... WYSIWYG [What You See Is What You Get] text editor".


A wiki is a simplified website (set of pages on the Web) that can be used at the personal and collaborative levels for personal and/or professional purposes. It's the simplest way of creating a webpage or a website and having a presence online.


Creating a wiki takes a couple of very simple steps, as you can see in the tutorial (in the Sidebar, on the right). Creating a new page couldn't be simpler (3 steps), so no tutorial is required. Editing pages is also very easy thanks to a simple editor with access to different tools (called plugins) that can diversify and enhance the content of the wiki. Creating a link and adding an image or a video are also simple processes, but they need practice.


Wiki hosts



Wikipedia is the most famous wiki there is. It's a web-based, collaborative encyclopedia created in a wiki.








PBworks and Wikispaces are two wiki hosts that have free and paid versions. The free versions are appropriate for a teacher's needs. Wikispaces is currently giving away the "Plus" features (no ads) for free to educators. Click here to see some of the features and create your own wiki(spaces).


Though I have worked with Wikispaces occasionally, PBworks has been my favorite wiki and the one I feel comfortable with. So that's the one I'm using for this workshop and the one I've chosen to show you.


Tutorials about PBworks

See my tutorials in the Sidebar (on the right, under Wikis)

Short PBworks Tutorials (browse the list on the right)

Plugins: Step-by-step instructions


What can a wiki be used for?

A wiki can be used for anything and everything. I'll give you a few examples of how I've used wikis with my young learners and teacher-trainees, both f2f (face-to-face) and online. And I'll give you very recent uses of wikis by our BaW10 online session participants.


Finally, I'll show you some features of PBworks wikis, such as: 

  • creating a new page
  • creating a link
  • inserting an image
  • inserting a video
  • uploading a file 
  • editing a page and the Sidebar
  • using some plugins
  • Page history
  • Pages & Files (tab)
  • Settings (tab) 


Dis/Advantages of wikis 


  • collaboration: pair or group work on a presentation, project, article

  • learner autonomy: students can work at their own pace and time

  • user-friendly: editors are similar to those of Word

  • any member of the group can edit the pages

  • comments can be permitted

  • history or back up: can always revert to a previous version

  • allow for insertion of links, sound files and video files

  • public or private (no need / need to invite people to see it, respectively)

  • pages are hosted/kept in the wiki server: no need to upload pages or have your server space



  • two people cannot work on same page at same time

  • need for an Internet connection: work is done online


(taken from http://appi07.wikispaces.com/adv-drawb Teresa Almeida d'Eca and Dafne Gonzalez) 


Guests to Demonstrate WIKI: Valentina Sitnik and Larissa Olesova


Examples of wikis 

My wikis

Remedial work (for 2nd year learners of English)

Online teacher development workshop (BaW10)

F2F teacher training workshop (Blogs&wikis)

Joint conference presentation (WiA in Seattle: prepared online in advance)

Conference presentation (APPI 2008: A "blended learning" blog)

Conference presentation (APPI 2009: Web 2.0 tools)

A personal event (the EU international e-Learning Award 2007)

A personal wiki (Teresa)


Recent wikis created by English teachers

The USA Regions: Living in Diversity (Valentina Sitnik, Elista Access Project, Russia)

Teaching Grammar (Gilder Davila, Brazil)

Our computer classes (Jennifer Verschoor, Argentina)

US-Siberian Link GlobalWarming Project (Larissa Olesova, Yakutsk, Russia)

EFL Writing Course Fall 2008 for World Economy, Yakutsk University (Larissa Olesova and Natalya Alexeeva, Yakutsk, Russia)

US-Siberian Collaborative Project Fall 2008 (Larissa Olesova, Yakutsk, Russia) 

http://dallasyakutskspringcollaboration.pbworks.com/ - currentl online collaboration between Yakutsk and Dallas (Larissa Olesova, Yakutsk) spring 2010


In addition: from the question about using blogs (from Monday March 22 chat) 


Examples from Valentina (Elista):

Vssmart09's blog This is my first Wordpress blog for my advanced university students.

I created the name of the blog in December 2009, but the rest was done during the BaW10.

English Through Comics This is my first Edublog for my advanced university students. There are three pages with three comic strips.

Valesit's Posterous  There is nothing, but I'll add something later.


Examples from Larissa (Yakutsk):

http://yakuttesol.blogspot.com/ - Yakut TESOL Blog for the members of Yakut TESOL - try this link

http://ittrainingpurdue.blogspot.com/ - the blog to introduce participants during F2F training at Purdue in fall 2009 with the group of international teachers

http://yakutskworldeconomy.blogspot.com/ - the blog for the students' collaborative project - we used it to facilitate social presence during introductory week between three classes (one in Yakutsk and the rest in the USA) - the example from Yakutsk

http://novavirginia.blogspot.com/ - the blog for the students' collaborative project - we used it to facilitate social presence during introductory week between three classes (one in Yakutsk and the rest in the USA) - the example from Washington, D.C.


Suggested readings 

The wiki way (presentation) - Rachel Boyd (a good and simple overview of wikis)

7 things you should know about... Wikis (Educause Learning Initiative, Jul. 2005)

Educational wikis (a resource of wikis created by K-12 teachers)

Educational Wikis (articles, tutorials, guides...)


Computer lab activities (suggestions)

  • a group creates a wiki at PBworks and another group at Wikispaces (if you face problems, stay with PBworks)
    • read about and explore the features before you start
    • exchange ideas on the differences
    • report back to the group the following morning 


  • create a wiki for a class: think of a simple and catchy title for it
    • write a "Welcome" message in the Front Page (it's advisable "not" to delete this title) 
    • click "Save" when you finish 
    • create a new page: give it a simple name (avoid spaces if more than one word)
    • insert content/text related to your class in each page
    • add an image (it can be in your computer or from the Web; in this case you need the URL) 
    • edit the Sidebar with links to the pages you created


  • send me a message with the URL / Web address of your wiki and your name to tmvaz-at-mail-dot-telepac-dot-pt; this way I can see what you're doing and how you progress during the week



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