Page:Wikipedia and Academic Libraries.djvu/20

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Library-Faculty Collaboration Using Wikipedia For Learning and Civic Engagement

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This platform uses collaborative models of content creation and fosters a culture of collaboration. Understanding how it works and mastering the editor’s skills often call for partnerships between different members of the university community. Wikipedia projects can bring extra value to academic libraries and be used for information literacy instruction and digital and media literacy programs (Lubbock, 2018). Library-faculty collaboration can open new opportunities for information and media literacy and increase student agency and civic participation. is chapter shares faculty and librarians’ experience using Wikipedia in the context of an initial pilot project aimed at adopting open educational resources (OER). The library-faculty team from the American University of Central Asia worked together to use Wikipedia as a tool to increase collaborative learning and civic participation of students in sociology courses.


Context

The American University in Central Asia (AUCA) is an international liberal arts university located in Kyrgyzstan, a former Soviet republic. The university offers a multidisciplinary learning environment and aspires to develop leaders for the democratic transformation of the Central Asian region. Students come from twenty-five countries around the world, including all the Central Asian countries, as well as Afghanistan, China, Pakistan, Russia, and South Korea, among others. AUCA faculty and librarians implement various instructional approaches to support learning and to promote critical inquiry and free expression. Wikipedia has become one of such tools helping to complement classroom learning and library instruction at the university.

In Kyrgyzstan, Wikipedia is listed among the most visited websites (SimilarWeb, 2020). e development of Wikipedia in the local context was implemented by nonprofit organizations that aimed to launch a Kyrgyz version of the platform. In the early 2010s, the local organization “Bizdin Muras,” with the support of the Open Society Foundation, attracted more than 10 universities, 30 academics, and about 300 students