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Wikipedia pops up in bibliographies, and even college curricula

“All through high school, Ani Schug was told to steer clear of Wikipedia. Her teachers talked about the popular online encyclopedia “as if it wasn’t serious or trustworthy” and suggested it only be used as a tip sheet. Imagine her surprise this spring when her American politics professor at Pomona College assigned the class to write detailed entries for Wikipedia instead of traditional term papers. Turns out it was a lot harder than the students anticipated. Their projects had to be researched, composed and coded to match Wikipedia’s strict protocols. Schug and her classmates wound up citing 218 scholarly legal and newspaper sources for their entry on a 1978 U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing corporate donations for ballot initiative campaigns.” (via Los Angeles Times)

One Response to “Wikipedia pops up in bibliographies, and even college curricula”

  1. ayana green
    June 26, 2014 at 3:40 pm #

    Educators should caution their students about using Wikipedia. Never should it be the only source for information. Wikipedia states that articles should contain ‘reliable sources’. Yet, their guidelines state “reliable sources are not required to be neutral, unbiased, or objective”. A perusal of contentious issues on Wikipedia bears this out. Since anybody can be a Wikipedia editor, a Wikipedia page can contain reliable sources yet be totally biased and unbalanced. The wisdom of the crowd doesn’t always work towards achieving truth on Wikipedia. Students should always include a variety of sources for their research, not just Wikipedia.« less

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