Wikiversity:Colloquium/archives/February 2009

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Hello, I once heard that there are different schools and colleges in wikiversity, such as medical school and such things. So is there such a thing, and if it does, how can I reach it?. Thanks! --;Hiba;1 15:56, 6 February 2009 (UTC)

There is School:Medicine and others may be found at Category:School subjects. --mikeu talk 16:31, 6 February 2009 (UTC)

Random Image

Can anyone suggest an elegant way of creating a random (or rotating) image gallery - the closest example I can think is the Main Page feature Educational Picture of the Day. I envision an image frame that random selects an image from a category each time the page is refreshed. Ideally we could make a template, the use of which one simple involve specifying a category from which to an images. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 10:47, 7 February 2009 (UTC)

Cool proposal - idea thingie: Wikipedia parity pages

I just had what seems like a really good idea. Someone over on WP was complaining that the mathematics and physics articles weren't written for laymen to understand. I told him that wouldn't really be appropriate for an encyclopedia, to try to take a lay reader through everything you would need to know to understand what a Lie superalgebra is, for example, and get them to the point that they could make it through the article. But that would be appropriate for a page on Wikiversity. And it seems like it totally could be a killer app that might drive huge amounts of traffic through to Wikiversity, both people just reading articles and experienced WP editors too, providing a swarm of potential new Wikiversity editors.

I'm imagining a prominent link - maybe even one in the "Tools" sidebar - that says "Can't understand this? Click here." And when you click it you end up at a Wikiversity page that corresponds to the article that's a sort of mini-portal for learning about the article subject, attempting to lead, for example, a primary school grad through every topic needed to be able to understand the WP article with links to Wikiversity resources. I would think that you could create templates with content that could modularly treat each discipline and sub-discipline and broad topic, so that they could be used and recombined across large numbers of these mini-portal pages.

I definitely don't think that the Wikiversity content itself should be in any way structured around WP articles but having this kind of linkage seems like something that not only could enhance Wikiversity via new traffic and the concomitant new blood and new content but which might create a really innovative online education system.

(I guess it's kind of late to say, "stop me if someone has already thought of this.") --Struthious Bandersnatch 18:43, 3 February 2009 (UTC)

I love the idea, but I don't think it could go on the sidebar, since we don't actually have parity in terms of having a resource for everything someone might be confused about :-). For subjects that we do have resources about, some modification of w:Template:Wikiversity could be added to the article to give a heads-up to those who want to learn more. --SB_Johnny talk 19:46, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
Also see the other templates in w:Category:Wikiversity templates. --mikeu talk 13:32, 9 February 2009 (UTC)
I really like the idea of developing entry level learning projects around difficult to understand topics. For example, I recently came across w:Kepler's laws of planetary motion which is tagged with: "This article may contain overly technical formulas for most readers to understand, and needs the formulas translated into English and/or visual diagrams. Please expand it to make it accessible to non-experts, without removing the technical details." It is a simple matter to modify a template as SB_Johnny suggested, but I think that the more important point is that we would need to have something in place at wikiversity to get people started. If the wp article is too difficult for the average person to understand it will do them little good to click on a link to wv and find a stub that has even less info. To get this going I would suggest we recruit some people who understand the topics well enough that they can at least outline a self-learning path to get a confused learner started. We could try to develop this idea at the Think tank. --mikeu talk 00:25, 4 February 2009 (UTC)
This was one of the original ideas for Wikiversity, even before the project launched (see Wikiversity and Wikipedia services). If anyone with physics knowledge is taking requests, I was looking at Spacetime the other day and wishing for a Wikiversity article called Spacetime metrics explained for biologists. --JWSchmidt 01:24, 4 February 2009 (UTC)
A good place to start is w:world line and w:Minkowski diagram. These can be used to visualize some of the concepts of spacetime without getting too bogged down in the mathematics. There is also a Cosmology Tutorial and an introduction to relativity that explains some concepts of spacetime. --mikeu talk 12:34, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
Personally, I think that the person complaining at WP has a point -- an Encyclopedia (like WP) should be aimed at the Lay person, and I would think something highly Specialized should be a link to WV. But either way, we should definitely encourage cross linking between WV and WP in areas where we have a common pages (as well as the other WM projects). Historybuff 20:06, 6 February 2009 (UTC)

Autism and Asperger's modules

I'm back after a long period of inactivity, and would appreciate any help in getting my autism and Asperger's modules up-to-date and cleaned up. AC --Sunstar NW XP 22:33, 11 February 2009 (UTC)

Wikiversity:Blocking policy

I have made a new suggestion regarding blocking lengths, please take a look at the talk page. Posting here for centralized discussion. --AC User:Sunstar NW XP 11:19, 20 February 2009 (UTC)

Articles on open education, Wikiversity

Hi all (popping in briefly - trying to devote myself to writing my thesis these days). I've just seen two things of potential interest to the community - they're not brand new, but I haven't seen them posted here, so here they are. The first is an article cowritten by Teemu Leinonen in First Monday about the Wikiversity course he facilitated about Open Educational Resources, which is titled "Learning in and with an open wiki project: Wikiversity’s potential in global capacity building". The second is an interview with Stian Haklav, who's involved in the soon-to-be-launched peer to peer university. Both make explicit reference to Wikiversity, some of the challenges it faces, and some potential solutions... Cormaggio talk 11:24, 20 February 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for these links, Cormaggio, much appreciated. A big pity about the "Copyright © 2009, First Monday. Copyright © 2009, Teemu Leinonen, Tere Vadén, and Juha Suoranta." at the bottom of Teemu's article.... something aint right here somehow... -- Jtneill - Talk - c 11:37, 20 February 2009 (UTC)

Moodle implementation

Sorry, I've been a bit quiet around here lately, folks. After summer break, first semester starts at the University of Canberra next week, so will become more active again, but mainly for class content, not so much for class involvement this semester. Related to this, we've switched learning management systems from WebCT (yuck) to Moodle (a lot better, but still an LMS). So, I've been testing our Moodle implementation out to see what its limitations and possibilities are... and liasing with the support staff to suggest some improvements. At least I can make units open, so you can see. I will still be putting generic content here on WV and on the corporate wiki. Links: Survey research and design in psychology - * Moodle - Confluence site. -- Jtneill - Talk - c 11:46, 20 February 2009 (UTC)

Learning project for Business Process Management program governance

I'm looking for some feedback on whether Wikiversity is the right place to host a learning project for content related to the governance of Business Process Management (BPM) programs. To a large extent, it is a relatively greenfield area in business. Specific individuals and organizations have solved particular parts of the governance model for their own organizations, but there is a lack of comprehensive material in this area. I'd like this learning project to be a place where

  • Experienced teams can share their expertise,
  • Newcomers can benefit from those lessons learned, and
  • The community can collectively increase the body of knowledge.

None of the other WikiMedia Foundation projects seemed appropriate. If Wikiversity is not the right place then alternative suggestions are welcome too. Thanks. --Chungw 15:15, 18 February 2009 (UTC)

A project on w:Business Process Management sounds like it would fit in with the scope of wikiversity. I'd encourage you to start a page and feel free to ask for feedback as you get it going. --mikeu talk 15:34, 22 February 2009 (UTC)

Wikimania 2009

Wikimania 2009, this year's global event devoted to Wikimedia projects around the globe, is accepting submissions for presentations, workshops, panels, posters, open space discussions, and artistic works related to the Wikimedia projects or free content topics in general. The conference will be held from August 26-28 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. For more information, check the official Call for Participation. Cbrown1023 talk 18:26, 22 February 2009 (UTC)

--HandsOnColletion 19:03, 26 February 2009 (UTC) Economy Solutions 101- Economy solutions 101 provides logical solutions to U.S. & World issues currently addressed. Economy Solutions is developed to balance work load of Government officials who's everday workload is heavy. Wikipedians are highly encouraged to contribute well planned ideas and/or solutions to world equations to solve problematic world issues contributed from everyday ordinary people who ideas are often undiscovered. All ideas and/or soulutions are welcome as no constribution to solving world issues is considered legally unacceptable. Many ideas, equations, & soulutions are contributed, not all are accepted. Wikipedians are encouraged to recruit future Economysolutionist to help constribute to solvable world issues preventing future world crises to common sense approchable answers. Bright, talented mindsets are considered to better structure plans correctly & present to a online panel of professional Economysolutionsit to develop & execute final plans into real world solutions to better enhance maintaince ultimately results in less confusion as Economysolutions solve world issues. Careful plannig, loigcal thinking, patience, & persitance is required when solving major economical issues. Please consider, Rome was not built over night! Economysolutionist are reconginized as honorable positions for status, whose solutions will help shape history. All ideas & solutions are contributed to a Board Of Economy Critics which are viewed in carefull consideration, later presented to a Board Of Economysolutionist for a final decision. A Board Of Organization is organized to maintain flow of well planned solutions. Final solutions are developed into a online presentation by a group of Board Of Presentation Performers. This is a highly professional master mind group of individuals who form & present soultions to critical world issues our world is currently addressing in simplicit form which is easily comprehended by all.

Image restoration

Hi, requesting guidance and assistance from Wikiversity regulars. I've been asked to put together a course on image restoration. Had gotten a start on something along these lines at Wikibooks last year, then upon becoming more familiar with both restoration and with Wikibooks, realized it crossed the line into original research and thus was outside that site's project scope. Would be more appropriate here.

This project may receive input and assistance from other editors who are new to Wikiversity. This effort at Wikiversity will be part of a project to provide quality restored media for Wikimedia Commons, the various language editions of Wikipedia, and sister sites. A helping hand would really be appreciated as we get this off the ground. Best regards, Durova 05:00, 28 February 2009 (UTC)

Good idea. Hillgentleman | //\\ |Talk 08:23, 2 March 2009 (UTC)
Hiya Durova. We have Special:Import enabled from en.wikibooks, if you want me or another custodian to make a local copy, let us know the project name on WB. --SB_Johnny talk 19:31, 2 March 2009 (UTC)
For reference, anyone can request an import at Wikiversity:Import. --mikeu talk 17:30, 3 March 2009 (UTC)

Guides for page creation?

I know there are some guides and tutorials here and there for content creation at Wikiversity, but I'm wondering if anyone with page design experience has looked over some of the learning pages? I'm working through some tech content, and some pages are long-ish while others are quite brief. The overall topic/learning units have enough there that they could be reorganized a bit, but the question is how much content is too much/not enough for a certain page? Anyone have pointers or comments? Historybuff 08:04, 14 February 2009 (UTC)

That really depends on the topic and what the goal of the learning project is. We do have MediaWiki:Longpagewarning which displays a warning when editing a page that is longer than about 32KB. IMHO, it is a good idea to keep a page below a certain size, although perhaps a bit larger than 32KB. One reason is that I have much experience working in inner city schools where students only have access to outdated computers (if they have access to any computers at all...) that might have trouble editing or even loading larger pages properly. At the very least it will be extremely slow. Also, it is becoming more common for people to browse or even edit wiki pages on w:mobile devices which often have limits to the page size that they can handle. For example, Family law Ontario (at about 120KB) crashes the Opera Mini web browser on my cell phone with an "out of memory" error. (Although, see for an alternative method for read-only browsing of wiki content) There is not really that much of an advantage to cramming everything into one large page, and it runs the risk of excluding audiences that we would like to reach out to. From the perspective of w:human-computer interaction there are w:usability and w:accessibility considerations. Most importantly, we need to keep the audience in mind. Are they really going to be able to take in that much information in one sitting or reading? Would it make the lesson more easy to digest if it were broken into smaller sections on seperate pages? I don't think we should have hard rules on this sort of thing, but I merely bring it up as something to think about when organizing content. It is really up to the editors who participate in creating content to decide, but it is sometimes a good idea to ask for others to review the pages to get a second opinion. Could you provide links to the pages that you would like advice about? --mikeu talk 16:11, 14 February 2009 (UTC)
You bring up some excellent points. I was looking at the IT portal, and a few of the projects are broken into logical sub-projects, but some of the sub projects are small, and seem to be formed from a specific template. I'm really looking to start a discussion on how learning projects should be put together really, as when I started here at WV I really hadn't a clue (but now I have some solid ideas). You have touched on what I wanted to focus on, though -- audience, HCI, usability and accessibility. And rather then just having wikilinks to WP, I'd like to use this as a learning project (if enough participants are willing) to figure out some best practices. I think it would help to bring focus to some learning projects here at Wikiversity, and it would help highlight us to other sites as well. Historybuff 07:33, 17 February 2009 (UTC)
There are a number of older pages that were created using template:Learning project boilerplate or similar Category:Page creation templates. Though I don't think these have been used as much recently. I would be interested in exploring these ideas. Let me know if you'd like to create a learning project on these topics. --mikeu talk 15:32, 18 February 2009 (UTC)
You mean better looking courses using HTML editing HistoryBuff?--Juan de Vojníkov 10:30, 5 March 2009 (UTC)
Not simply better looking courses HTML wise, although that might form a small part of it.
I'm thinking more along the lines of better planned courses, and better delivered learning projects. Not every learning project needs to be fully planned, but the more complex the topic and treatment, the harder it will be to have a cohesive course without some kind of planning.
I'd love to create a learning project on these topics. Historybuff 06:37, 8 March 2009 (UTC)