Wikiversity talk:Research ethics

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Why do my links to the Ethical Management of the English Language Wikipedia research project only work on talk pages? --JWSchmidt 03:35, 22 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]

The prefix is ":en:" not "en:wikiversity". --JWSchmidt 03:44, 22 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Reciprocally, what is the prefix to use on en.wikiversity.org to reference pages on beta.wikiversity.org? Barry Kort 18:23, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

When at the English language Wikiversity, use "betawikiversity:" as the prefix. --JWSchmidt 21:39, 22 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks. I'll give that a try. —Moulton 23:08, 22 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Action Research, the Fifth Discipline, and Alternatives[edit]

Action Research is the name of a process that has been developed over the past quarter century to bring the subject of research into the loop to help develop ethical best practices for professionals working with the subject of research. Most notably, this method has been developed in the education community, where it's called Teacher Action Research. The subjects (students) are brought into the process whereby the faculty are seeking to devise best ethical practices for teaching students, including those with special needs.

Compare Action Research to Peter Senge's notion of The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization. Senge's clients are leading edge organizations which continually learn from experience, revising their business models, internal organizational models, business practices, and internal practices in a continual quest to operate with best ethical practices.

Compare Action Research and The Fifth Discipline to private psychotherapy, where a single analysand works in partnership with a single analyst to identify and solve an individual's personal problems. In psychotherapy, the goal is to identify and overcome impediments to becoming a higher functioning individual. The same methods also apply to group therapy, where more than one individual shares the same issues.

Compare Action Research, The Fifth Discipline, and Group Therapy to Political Process, where a body politic reviews problematic political issues affecting the entire community and seeks better community policies and practices going forward.

Compare Action Research, The Fifth Discipline, Group Therapy, and Political Process to Theatrical Arts, wherein a playwright seeks to present a dramatization of an episode where the characters face and overcome some challenging obstacles to achieving a worthwhile goal.

Can you identify the impediments to any version of the above processes, in any relevant context applicable to Wikiversity, and imagine how to overcome them?

Moulton 08:24, 25 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]

"identify the impediments" <-- I tried to start a discussion about that. One suggestion that has been made is that in order to study the history of edits at a wiki webpage, you must first obtain informed consent from each editor who edited the page. For example, see: "People who are the subject of a case study have agreed to be part of the case study". Another position on informed consent is stated at the research ethics page. I think these are the kinds of issues we need to figure out. --JWSchmidt 15:45, 25 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]
The GFDL already grants a liberal license to port content from Wikipedia to other venues of review and discussion. For a small number of individuals in a tax-exempt, donor-funded, globally-scoped educational project with an express Mission Statement to try to limit scholarly examination of their shameful role in subverting and corrupting that published mission is simply ludicrous. Whether we call it Action Research, or the Fifth Discipline, the process of critical self-examination dates back to Socrates. Outlawing it in the Wikisphere is not only a contra-indicated practice, it's a foolishly laughable one in the 21st Century Information Age. More to the point, these are the same would-be fascists who gleefully embraced the notorious "Spammish Inquisition" in the first place. —Moulton 16:49, 25 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]
"critical self-examination" <-- this is an interesting process in wiki communities. Wikipedia has a long history of dividing the wiki world into parts or "domains". Many editors never venture far from the first part: read an article, click "edit", add in some information or fix an error in the text of a page or add a reference, click "save". At this basic "level" of participation the focus of editing activity is mostly on the "page content" of main namespace pages and you usually do not have to even think about where the page content came from. The other "domain" is a type of "meta level" where it becomes much more important to look at patterns of editing over time and you soon get involved with "meta-level" tasks such as trying to associate problematic page contents with particular individuals. Wikipedia has evolved a complex set of cultural rules that puts limits on "meta-content" such as when it can be generated, where it must be located and what can be said about editors. Wikipedia has always had a strong separation between main namespace "encyclopedia content" and "meta-content" about how the Wikipedia project functions. Wikiversity research projects threaten that system of a clean separation between "main namespace content" and "meta-level content". At Wikiversity we can naturally have main namespace "learning resources" that are research projects where we do things such as examine the edit history of a page such as Rosalind Picard. Such a research project naturally leads to study of editors of that page who have violated BLP policy. An interesting question becomes: what happens when the editors who have violated policy object to having their policy violations discussed by research project participants at Wikiversity? Do they have the power to ban action research projects at Wikiversity and restrict "critical self-examination" of wiki communities? Similarly, attempts have been started within Wikiversity to prevent "meta-discussions" from taking place in the any location outside of "Wikiversity:" namespace "requests for comments" pages. --JWSchmidt 18:20, 25 January 2009 (UTC)[reply]