WikiEducator:Google Summer of Code
The OER Foundation has been selected as one of the mentoring organizations for the 2014 Google Summer of Code. Here are some starting places for students considering contributing to WikiEducator and the OERu initiative.
If you have taken a course offered in WikiEducator, you have a significant head start. Think about how your course was offered and how many great ways you could improve on that experience. Develop a proposal for a suitably-sized project (ideally with plans for future work) that helps future students (or teachers) avoid problems you had or that make sharing easier. Talk with the educators that have offered courses or shared resources about how you could make that process more effective or more efficient.
Explore the goals of the WikiEducator project and the OERu. You are a student. How would it work for you? More importantly, as a software designer, how could you make it better? Look at some of the Widgets that have been prototyped. Read some of the tech blog posts and tech mailing list discussions.
The WikiEducator community has already identified some potential starting points for project proposals.
Developing a Proposal
The most effective way to develop a proposal is to start a page in the wiki with your ideas. Using a subpage of your user page is the best place for initial explorations.
N.B. After you've developed a proposal, remember that you must also submit it to the Google Melange site. (Technically you could just submit a pointer to your proposal in the wiki, but please copy/paste the whole thing for the ease of the reviewers. Thanks.)
Michael Haggerty has written some important pointers about how to participate in GSoC. Especially if you are new to WikiEducator and/or the OERu, please remember that we are a small development community with ambitious goals that are subject to change. You will need to bring motivation to help us change education, not simply coding skills.
There are a variety of mailing lists related to WikiEducator and the OERu:
- The best forum for discussing the technical details behind WikiEducator. This is also the best place to sound out ideas for Google Summer of Code projects.
- The general WikiEducator mailing list, composed mainly of educators.
- A public discussion list about the OERu initiative, with discussions ranging from aspirations to planning.
Wiki Discussion Pages
Every page in Mediawiki is backed by a threaded discussion page (see the Discussion tab). Use them to engage in local discussions about a particular topic or course.
There are g+ communities devoted to:
Each could offer its own kind of help and inspiration.
WikiEducator has a very small presence on the #wikieducator channel of irc.freenode.net. You may occasionally find some discussion there.
There are occasional g+ Hangouts to help wiki users get past blocking issues or explore alternative ways of using the wiki for sharing and collaboration.
WikiEducator specific code can be found in our Gitorious repository (or some prototypes in Jim Tittsler's repository).
And of course, as a farm of Mediawiki instances, we rely heavily on publicly available extensions. Improving one of them could improve WikiEducator.