User talk:Xenon~betawikiversity

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Hello. I would say it's for conducting reasearch projects on Wikiversity, and possibly publishing it. guillom 14:22, 19 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Just do it and be bold ;) See Wikiversity:Multilingualism/En if possible. guillom 14:50, 19 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Research guidelines[edit]

1. Quote:"*Research projects within Wikiversity that use research methods in addition to literature review (primary research)"--Hillgentleman 01:58, 20 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

  • What does the phrase within wikiversity mean?

2. Quote:"All research must be ethical. If you are deceiving, harming or using data without consent, that research should not be published on Wikiversity."

  • I have some conceptual problems here.
    • What do you mean by published on wikiversity?
    • I gather that, everything I write here is public, but nothing would be published, as long as I do not solemnly declare so.
    • But then, in the above quote, do you really mean, If you are deceiving, harming or using data without consent, that research should not be conducted on wikiversity? Or do you mean that, it is okay to do those unethical things so long as you don't include them in the final report?--Hillgentleman 08:25, 20 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

3.Quote:"You should propose a hypothesis, and you should be enthusiastic to obtain the results. However, there is a difference between proving a hypothesis and manipulating results. You should conduct research to find out what the results are, not to prove yourself right."

  • The guideline should not tell researchers what they should do. And it cannot make people enthusiastic by telling them to be.--Hillgentleman 09:29, 20 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

On your reply[edit]

1. In my experience on the web, anything publically accessible is classed as published, not neccessarily those sent Perhaps that is too restrictive for Wikiversity, but it is a looser and less permenant sense than book publishing.

  • Indeed it is very restrictive. How can students learn without informal discussions? If you want everything to be considered published, wikiversity would not be different from wikibook.

2. ethical guidelines...

  • These are called guidelines, but they are more than that. Wikimedia would look at them to know what wikiversity does. The ethical guidelines may need some more care in its formulation.

3. The same goes for "you should be enthusiastic" - we can't force it but it makes research better. I'm not

  • This is unnecessary.

4. there's also no point in gathering data if you're going to change what that data says.

  • This belongs to ethics.

5. I'm advising people what should and should not be 'published' on Wikiversity, with regards to research.

  • Here is a confusion. This is a set of research guidelines, whereas publication is only the final of the many processes of research.

Best,Hillgentleman 12:20, 20 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Neutral Point of View is not suitable for describing the research process. The correct notion is objectivity.
"Results manipulation is separate to maintaining an ethical procedure. If people change the results to suit their POV, to back up what they think or simply to prove themselves right, that defies the entire notion of conducting research - they might as well just make it up completely. The research guidelines should outline that the raw data should not be edited, although any user is free to add their own interpretation and analysis of the results." -
  • This is part of the research ethics. I see that you use the term ethic in the narrow sense of moral. I do not think this usage is standard.

-Hillgentleman 18:39, 20 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

research as posting your hypothesis, design and initial results on a page, other people discussing them on the discussion tab and making edits where appropriate
  • Then the discussion page should be as free as the law allows.--Hillgentleman 18:49, 20 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Modes of Communications[edit]

  • I mean that those are the types of communications that occurs in any scholarstic institution. Therefore wikiversity must accomodate them, one way or other.

However, how do we define who is an 'expert', and does an 11 year old schoolboy count as a student?

  • Expert = somebody who uses the knowledge fluently; student = somebody who is learning. I use these terms loosely. The important things are the different modes of communication.

Who would be permitted to post seminars or letters, what distinguishes these people?

  • Communication is between two persons. These two persons choose the particular mode of communication.
  • Wikiversity should only be responsible for its publications, after peer review, which would be in the report namespace (or category). As time goes along, wikiversity may also vouch for some of its lecturers. Yet, since a lot more is going on in a university than those formal discourses, wikiversity should also accomodate them- they may be good or bad, but a scholar has the freedom of speech. Whoever says anything stupid would just be ignored. --Hillgentleman 19:06, 20 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Taking one of your ideas, would it not be a good idea simply to have Question&Answer sessions?

disadvantages to hosting research[edit]

"I see no disadvantages to hosting research (whether approved by a Wikiversity committee or whatever). If there are, could you point them out?" <-- I share your enthusiasm for exploring the use of Wikiversity as a place for online collaborative research. I think the main difficulty for research in a wiki environment is the same now as what it was when Wikipedia started. How is a volunteer community going to prevent cranks and POV-pushers from exploiting an open platform for their misguided or intellectually dishonest purposes? An entire set of interlocking safeguards has been put in place to protect Wikimedia Foundation projects from this danger - all centered on the NPOV and NOR policies. If Wikiversity is going to open the door to original research, we will need a new set of safeguards that allow us to make sure that our well-intentioned openness to research is not hijacked by trouble-makers. This is why the Board of Trustees requested (...guidelines should be developped, *in particular* with regards to collaborative research....) that the Wikiversity community make plans for how to conduct research. In my view, POV-pushing is a tricky issue to address within Wikiversity guidelines for research. We need to protect forms of POV-pushing that are honest attempts to reveal new knowledge. At the same time, we need to prevent attempts to use Wikiversity to advance propaganda and other forms of dishonest POV-pushing. Towards this end, I think Wikiversity needs some sort of formal system for review of research activities and "publication of research results". This means creating a system by which the Wikiversity community would utilize the required methods (such as making use of experts for peer review and detecting bogus research) to promote high standards of academic and intellectual honesty. It is not at all obvious that the Wikiversity community can do this. I think it is clear that Wikiversity will not be allowed to "wing it" in the sense that we will not be allowed to open our arms to original research unless we show that we have first identified likely problems and put in place a system to deal with them. --JWSchmidt 20:56, 22 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

"completed research....protected and labelled approved" <-- I think that Wikiversity needs to be creative in providing ways to allow participants to control who can edit research-related pages. I accept the idea that it should be possible to archive certain pages as "historical artifacts" that will not be subject to additional editing. The approach that everyone can edit every page will not be useful for Wikiversity pages were one person or a small group of collaborators is exploring a strange new idea. There is a start towards a system for page protection at Wikiversity:Page protection templates.

"allow members of the community to tag sections of the report as unfair (with a template+category), allow encourage discussion of it, and allow corrections (and reversions) by custodians as normal." <-- I'm not sure if you have seen this website. It has some examples of templates that can be used control who can make changes to a page and to indicate how people can comment on on-going work (for example, see Initial draft. I do not think that custodians can be relied on for making good decisions about the content of pages dealing with research. Yes, for obvious problems (page contents that are obvious vandalism) custodians and all wiki participants can always act to correct the problem. I am more concerned about situations where the problems are subtle and expert knowledge of a topic might be required to understand what the problem is. This is why I have suggested the creation of a new type of Wikiversity functionary who would help guide the community through such problems (see).

"actual collected data should be kept in a subpage and protected by a custodian as soon as it is there - that way neither the researcher or any malicious or well-intentioned editor has any chance to manipulate the data to push their agenda." <-- I hope that there would be little need for custodian involvement. For example, by tradition, wiki participants can claim their user page as their own. Some participants invite others to edit their user page, but unless such an invitation is given, nobody else has a right to edit your user page. There are very few cases where administrators need to actually act to protect user pages from editing. Similarly, it might be possible to mark pages as being archives and just leave it at that, in most cases.

"ensure the objectivity of the report" <-- I agree that objectivity is the ultimate goal of the entire research process, but it is also the case that individual research reports fall short of that goal. It is more important that individual reports fully describe the methods used so that others can try to replicate the results.

"completed research....labelled approved" <-- The idea that peer review and discussion ends and then a research report is published is an artifact of the print era. An advantage of electronic publication is that peer review can continue after publication. Problems with published articles are often not recognized until years later when it is found that reported results can not be replicated. More importantly, research results really do not mean much until they can be independently supported by others. In my view, the true authority of a research report only comes from an historical record of confirmation of the contents of the report by others. If Wikiversity gets involved in a system for research publication, I hope that system has a clear system for marking research as confirmed or unconfirmed with full access to the evidence for confirmation. --JWSchmidt 01:59, 23 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

"having a Research: namespace, and with [*] permissions set to readonly." <-- I agree with the idea of requiring user account creation for participation in some aspects of Wikiversity. I previously suggested that anyone who wants to move outside of the confines of the traditional Wikimedia Foundation NPOV policy be required to have a user account with a confirmed email address for contacts (Wikiversity:Scholarly ethics). In the area of research, I think it is unavoidable that participants will be dealing with wiki pages that exist outside of the confines of traditional NPOV policy. The idea of a "Research:" namespace is interesting. The alternative is to simply make use of a category for pages that are devoted to original research. In my opinion, a good learning environment is always pushing up against the unknown and the role of research in revealing new knowledge and questioning old ideas. I think the claim can be made that everything we try to pass off as "facts" in a learning environment is really just the result of someone's interpretation of the available evidence. Good teaching often makes clear the origin of "the facts" and integrates understanding of limitations that exist in what is being asserted. This means that there should be a burring of boundaries between teaching and research. I wonder if creating a "Research:" namespace might do more harm than good. Would it bolster the thinking of those who compartmentalize research away from education? I know that having namespaces for pages that serve specific purposes is useful, but it is also one of the less intuitive aspects of the wiki user interface. There is a general trend in Wikimedia Foundation projects towards splitting off individual projects for each specific mission. Each project is organized around a main namespace that is supposed to have a particular well-defined type of content. If we put research-related pages anywhere except the main namespace, people will be able to argue that research is a separate type of content that should exist in its own wiki. I prefer the alternative view, that research and education should be totally integrated. So we have to balance the positive organizational benefits of a "Research:" namespace against the danger of increasing the harmful divisions that already tend to grow between education and research. I have one last comment on the idea of a "Research:" namespace, see below.

"referees as approved editors (with academic experience)" <-- Wikiversity has no way of establishing the fact that a participant has "academic experience". I think all we can do as a community is look at a participant's editing history and decide if that person seems to know what they are doing and if they have the social skills required to constructively interact with other members of the online community.

"formally review research reports and deal with anomalies and agenda-pushing? What stage of the process would this occur in" <-- I agree that there needs to be a flexible process whereby review of research is a constant process. In a wiki, everyone who looks at a page is called upon to identify potential problems and help the community deal with them. A problem that Wikipedia has is that it has made no effort to support the participation of experts. This is dangerous because the experts often come to feel that they have no advantage over dishonest POV-pushers and others who are disrupting the process of constructing a useful information resource. The most important thing would be to have some system by which the community can identify participants who are constructive and trusted and encourage them to take the lead as community advisors; this means calling upon them to play a role in explaining how their specialized knowledge illuminates content disputes/issues that the community may be facing….at all stages of the research process. But I also think there should be a formal peer review process in addition to the normal "wiki review process". In particular, there is a critical time when a researcher says, "okay, I have done my best, here are my new ideas/results/data and it is time for others to look them over, check for errors, try to replicate my results." In my opinion, this is a good time for a serious and formal dialog to start between the authors of the new research report and a community of interested peers.

"is when the referee happens by enough?" <-- if the system is designed correctly (and I think this is the true challenge we face) then it will be enough. The basic principle will have to be that if the required minimum number of trusted peer reviewers does not give an okay, then the new research is not viewed as having been "formally published". This means it will be of critical importance to have a large enough research community so that there are enough reviewers.

"anybody is entitled to their own point of view so long as they do not edit others POVs or vandalise" <-- That is the starting point of the research process, but new research is really meaningless until others have looked carefully at it and then said, "the methods used seem sound," and, "we did the same kind of research study and got similar results".

"Should researchers have to submit hypotheses and an outlined procedure for approval before they proceed with the research, or at least before they can submit it? Either that or referees should have the ability responsibility to weed out 'bad' projects and discuss them with their creator." <-- I think the important thing will be for Wikiversity to take seriously the fact that knowing how to do good research is one of the most important cultural treasures that is passed from generation to generation. Experienced researchers need to open their on-going research projects to students. Students who participate in research projects learn how to do research. Wikiversity should develop many types of systems for research mentoring, advising and collaboration. In the bricks-and-mortar world this is all done on a very formal basis. There is often a huge investment of time and effort required to train someone how to do good research. It will be interested to see how a distributed online community can deal with these issues! I think there will naturally come to be a system within which anyone who does not have a proven track record of doing good research will face very close scrutiny when they start doing research at Wikiversity. It is rather like open microphone night at a performance club. It does not take very long for people to figure out who is an experienced performer and who is a bumbling beginner. I would certainly be in favor of a system that would require researchers to make a very public statement of what their goals and methods are right at the start of a new research project. This would also be a good time for people to invite collaboration and help from experienced researchers.

"the original researcher themselves ….. Could they not pass on responsibility for maintaining the report to a peer, friend or other editor? <-- I hope that Wikiversity will be a place where productive research collaborations exist. It is easy for me to imaging research projects that would be started by one Wikiversity participant and then continued by others even after the originator leaves. I think that hosting "research projects" would be the proper use of a "Research:" namespace. All of the "meta-research" discussions about how to do research could exist in the "Research:" namespace while actual research reports should go into the Wikiversity main namespace (in a category for research results).

"The referees would be a great asset, but what would be the selection criteria" <-- A "referee" (it might be better to use another name such as "community advisor") should have a public history of page edits and constructive interactions with other wiki participants. There would have to be a system by which members of the community would look at the edit history and construct a report that evaluates the nature and quality of the edits. There could be objective criteria such as, Does the "referee candidate" cite reliable and verifiable sources when adding information to wiki pages? Does the "referee candidate" respond to questions and challenges with constructive discussion? --JWSchmidt 17:30, 23 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

  • Referee and outreach: Wikiversity must reach out(as John Schmidt says) so that the public benefit from the knowledge generated. Wikiversity must show the results of her studies to the public. Some studies are too esoteric, and the only chance is to show them to somebody the public can trust - an established scholar, or submit it to an established refereed journal. Wikiversity cannot conduct every piece of research and peer review all by itself. No university can do that. No institution can. No matter how good your works are, you must let others evaluate it. --Hillgentleman 01:23, 24 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

more comments on what you said on my talk page[edit]

"to me lessons and research are two ends of the scale" <--- there is no doubt that our culture is dominated by the idea that education is process by which students are rolled down the factory line and have facts and knowledge poured into their heads. An alternative approach to education is to allow students to be active learners. One of the great ways to get students excited about learning and involved in charting the course of their own personal growth is to involve them in activities that allow then to play the role of a discoverer/investigator. Which approach to learning is better suited for the wiki user interface? Sure, you can use wiki as a tool for constructing an online replica of the traditional bricks-and-mortar factory school. However, the purpose of wiki software is to promote collaborative authoring of webpages. A natural choice is to adopt a learning model in which the student can be an active participant in everything that goes on in a collaborative learning environment and this is the model that was incorporated in the Wikiversity project proposal. One of the key features of research is the importance of critical thinking and "thinking outside of the box". By involving students in research or at the very least explaining the research process and taking the time to show where "the facts" come from, students learn to be critical thinkers and really come to understand things rather than just memorizing facts for the next exam. I like to think of the printing press and cheap books as tools that made universal literacy possible. I like to think of the internet and tools like wiki websites as a way to change the way our culture has traditionally sent most people down the factory education track while a minority group gets a more complete education. I think our culture has reached the point where everyone should have "research literacy". There are some people working towards the goal of making sure that every student in the world has a computer, access to the internet, and is able to participate in constructionistis learning environments. So, in my view, Wikiversity can be part of an exploration of ways to revolutionize education. Jimmy Wales made a list of things to "set free" including " the curriculum". In my opinion, we should explore the idea that it might be possible to add research to that list of cultural elements that should be freely available to everyone on the planet. I'd be saddened to see any decisions made about the structure of Wikiversity that bias Wikiversity towards convention (education and research are distinct) and inhibit our ability to explore new styles of education that are likely to become increasingly important in the future.

"I don't think having a namespace for research would baffle people" <-- the bafflement would only come from having to divide things into artificial "research" and "not-research" categories while at the same time trying to increase the integration of research into all aspects of education (which is an approach I would like to be free to explore). For people who are not interested in such integration it would be natural to split research off into its own compartment. These are the kinds of choices that the Wikiversity community has to make. I hope we can make them while looking to the future rather than while clinging to the arbitrary conventions of the past.

"You suggest using Research: for the projects and collaboration, but I suppose that's nothing that couldn't be done from the main namespace." <-- everything could be done in a single namespace in a single wiki. The Wikipedia community has spontaneously "invented" the idea of "WikiProjects", a form of meta-content that functions as wiki content development projects. At Wikipedia all of these projects are in a pseudo namespace that starts with "Wikipedia:WikiProject". While still at Wikibooks, the Wikiversity community created content development pages called schools and departments. When the Wikiversity website was started, these content development projects were formalized within two new namespaces, "School:" and "Topic:". Wikiversity participants can work together in these content development projects to produce educational resources that are placed in the main namespace. We could do the same thing with a "Research:" namespace. All of the research-related planning and meta-discussions could be in the form of projects located in the "Research:" namespace while actual data and research reports would exist in the main namespace. You might feel that it would be overwhelming to put all actual Wikiversity content (yes it is going to be a huge amount of "stuff"!) into the main namespace, but the portal/category system is powerful. In addition, some Wikiversity participants are devoted to the idea of creating a new "metadata" system to aid in searching content.

"should we have individual URM permissions for the researcher to be allowed to create pages in the Research: namespace?" What is "URM"?

"Don't worry, I'll stop using up so much of your talk page soon" <-- No problem. Eventually all of these topics will show up in the centralized discussion. Hopefully before the 6 month "deadline" set by the Board of Trustees. JWSchmidt 17:35, 25 October 2006 (UTC)[reply]

0 page views[edit]

"0 page views" <-- That's strange!

Are you ready to help draft a set of research guidelines? --JWSchmidt 00:09, 2 February 2007 (UTC)[reply]

"Let's get this show on the proverbial road" <-- I have my slate cleared and will start tomorrow. I put a few thoughts at [User:JWSchmidt/Blog/5 February 2007. --JWSchmidt 03:25, 7 February 2007 (UTC)[reply]

wikiversity:review board[edit]

have I moved to Wikiversity talk:Review board/En, as wikiversity:multilingualism specifies.--Hillgentleman| 05:23, 8 February 2007 (UTC)[reply]

IRC meeting[edit]

Hi Xenon, I'm sure you're aware, but just to remind you that the IRC meeting about research will be this Saturday (10th) @ 22:00 UTC (see [1], [2]) in freenode channel #wikiversity (not #wikiversity-en). Details on Wikiversity:IRC_meeting about research. Hopefully see you there.. Cormaggio 00:27, 8 March 2007 (UTC)[reply]


Xenon, Did you just past your birthday? Hillgentleman| 06:34, 5 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Your account will be renamed[edit]

19:07, 17 March 2015 (UTC)


02:27, 19 April 2015 (UTC)