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The Handbook needs your input!

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Our knowledge is limited. Help to make this Handbook more useful for others!

The Authors who already contributed

The TAO Handbook aims at giving useful information on older adults and online collaboration. Its initial contents are based on the research results of the project it sprang from, Third Age Online (TAO). The consortium has done its best to do research from various angles. Besides desktop research, focus groups and surveys, it has evaluated many different activities. But despite the consortium’s thorough work, the research results cannot possibly involve all relevant information in an ideal way.

We know that the readers of this Handbook have experience that could help others a lot. Maybe you have organized a workshop on an online community that targeted older adults – here, you can share your experiences! Maybe you have been working online with (other) older adults for years – many people will be interested to find out how you keep them motivated.

This Handbook is set on a collaborative platform so that you can contribute. Anyone may add their own articles, comments or amendments – and anyone can correct mistakes or make improvements to existing texts. Editing is actually very simple. Find out how to do it in the next section.

How to contribute: Technical issues

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These are very brief instructions on some basic technical issues of contributing. For more details, see the Wikiversity support pages.

Registration: You choose

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You can edit the Handbook as a registered or non-registered user. If you are not registered and logged in while making the changes, your IP address will be saved and shown next to the changes. If you register, you can choose the user name that will appear next to your edits. You’ll find the link leading to the registration form in the upper right-hand corner of the page.

There are different aspects to consider when choosing a name. Under the following links, you'll find more information on…

some good reasons to create a user account.
which user name to choose.

Editing an existing text

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Editable version of Wikiversity article

As you open an article in the Handbook, you will first see a text in which you cannot make changes.

Click on the tab “Edit” on the right side above the text. You will now see the editable version of the text in a box (see picture on the left).

Apart from the actual text, the text elements that regulate the appearance of the writing will also be visible. This can seem a bit confusing at first. Don’t let it worry you.

Once you have identified the parts of the text you want to adapt, you can simply make changes directly in the box. Should you want to change styles, you can use the buttons above the box.

Just before saving the page click on “Show Preview” to see the changes you have made as they will appear for other users. This gives you the opportunity to correct mistakes (especially in formatting) before they are put online.

Once the preview satisfies you, click on “Save Page”. That's it, your edit is now online!

All edits are recorded!

Editing history of an article in TAO Wikiversity

All versions of the page or section that have ever existed are saved in Wikiversity, along with a list of changes. This list shows when a change was made and by whom (user name or IP address). See the screenshot on the right for an example of such a list.

You can access this list by clicking on the "View History" tab above the text, right next to the "Edit" tab. This comes in very handy as you will not be able to “destroy” anything by accident.

Creating a new module

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Creating a whole new module is only a bit more complicated than editing an existing one. Find a detailed instruction on how to do so on the Wikipedia support pages.

Structure of articles

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When editing a text or adding a new article please take account of the general structure of the texts published in the handbook. To assure a certain consistency, all of the articles are structured like this:

1 Introduction

2 Recommendations

3 Examples

4 Backround/Theory

5 Further Information/ References

How to contribute: Writing for your target group

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The texts for the Handbook should be useful for the target group, that is stakeholders in online communities working with older adults. When you drafting contents, it is important to keep them in mind.

One strategy not to lose sight of your target group is working with personas. In marketing and user-centered design, personas are fictional characters created to represent different user types within a targeted demographic, attitude and/or behavior set that might use a service or product in a similar way.

Personas are useful in considering the goals, desires, and limitations of costumers and users. Their use fosters empathy among the authors, and help them to avoid structuring their product according to their own needs and expectations. Furthermore, by making assumptions about the users transparent, they allow for an open discussion and questioning of stereotypes, based on empirical research.

The TAO team has created several personas that you may consider before and while drafting your contents. There's a useful overview of the different groups the Handbook targets including personas that you'll find interesting.

Individual personas include the following persons:

You can also create your own persona, corresponding to the needs and difficulties that you or some of your colleagues may have. A module on creating personas explains how to do so.

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Editing an existing module (in Wikiversity)

Creating a new module (in Wikiversity)

Wikiversity Help Desk

Target groups of the Handbook (including personas)