During the past decade, most educators have focused on the collaborative aspects of wikis and how they have enabled us to collectively create web content. Our focus has been different. We are interested in the information we find within the interconnections of the different pages in a wiki. For example, suppose we have a group of students creating a wiki for a semester project. As one can imagine, the number of pages and the number of links between these pages will grow and change as time passes.

The simplest version of the question we are currently researching is whether we can infer anything about the students' learning process by analyzing these links and the associated changes. We are trying to connect this work with concept maps (which we plan to do by applying network analysis techniques) and we are investigating the best scaffolding methods so that our students are able to express their work in a wiki without being lost in overwhelming levels of freedom. We are also investigating the overlap between computational thinking and dealing with unstructured (and non-computational) information in this context.

History Specific Principle Questions

Computational Thinking Goals Of Our Work

Teaching and Learning Issues Explored By Our Work

Student Preparation Problems Addressed By Our Work

AHA 2015 Feedback Form

Sample structure

This project is being funded by a National Endowment for the Humanities Digital Humanities Start-Up Grant. For more information on the NEH and the Office of Digital Humanities click here.

Project Directors

Now in its third year, this project is a collaboration between Ali Erkan (Computer Science) and Michael Smith (Departments of History/Environmental Studies and Sciences).