Wiki Educator Bench Marking Project
Thank-you for this very important idea / comment. It is very timely as we are setting up a whole approach within WE to deal with featured works (or benchmarks) and quality.
Some History (as I understand it): Two distinct quality initiatives have been kicked off within WE. I believe that the first actually led to the second. If you want to review what has unfolded so far I suggest you look at two projects;
- http://wikieducator.org/Quality4eLearning - this one seems to have been active until April 2008 when it became (???) the second project
- http://wikieducator.org/WikiEducator:Quality_Assurance_and_Review - this one has continued development and the idea of featured works became the way we would encourage quality with a review of the e-Learning Maturity Model (eMM) to see how it would apply to wiki based education (you can read the discussion behind the page if you want more information). The featured works approach was taken from the wikipedia featured articles and the eMM was taken from the work of Dr. Stephen Marshall. From this I have begun to build the http://wikieducator.org/WikiEducator:Quality_Assurance_Framework microsite. As I wanted to build on the featured works idea I really wanted to base the featured works guidelines on some solid research and to make reference the the eMM methodology.
Benchmarks: My understanding of benchmarks in education is they come in two forms, internal to the institution and external or comparative standards. The internal benchmarks are a part of a quality initiative to show improvement against some internal indicator or indicators. The indicators are developed internally with associated measures to show improvement. The benchmarks become the measurement in time of how the institution is performing against the indicators. The external benchmarks are to measure institutional performance against external (national or international) standards. When it comes to using benchmarks with Wiki based education I believe we are are new ground. We are setting a precedence. I don't think that current external benchmarks apply to WE, parts of the benchmarks may apply but I think we need to review the benchmarks and discuss as a community how they would apply. I do think creating internal benchmarks would work and I think using a featured works approach would work well within the wiki based education context. I believe that once we have some well written featured works guidelines then we could start measuring the quality of WE content against these featured works guidelines.
So where do I see us going from here;
- we complete a basic quality assurance framework that we can reference as we build out the featured works approach.
- we build out the featured works approach
- we build out the levels of quality so people can continue to add to WikiEducator WITHOUT feeling they MUST be a part of our featured works approach.
- we begin to use the featured works approach in a way that can be localized for different geographic regions so quality is also put within cultural context.
- through time we use the featured works guidelines as indicators of quality where our current benchmark is no featured works and through time we will increase the number of featured works within WE and hopefully we see an increase to the velocity in which new items become featured works... which I believe would be an indicator to increasing quality.
Peter Rawsthorne 07:24, 18 August 2008 (UTC)