Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Stance on Wikipedia

I've always been a neutral person so I think my stance for the Wikipedia Essay topic is that colleges should use Wikipedia as learning material in order for students to write better. I mean, in my experience, I've only heard my teacher say, " YOU CANNOT USE WIKIPEDIA AS A SOURCE! THAT'S BLASPHEMY!" I know that it's because Wikipedia is edited by non credible people and there are so many people that use the internet.

However, whenever I go to a Wikipedia page, I always see citations at the bottom so doesn't that mean that Wikipedia is citing its sources? It would be nice if part of the curriculum would be deciphering the Wikipedia page and seeing why it wouldn't count as a source. It would also be nice to see proof of why Wikipedia does follow the reputation of not editing it's sources. I mean, when I read the Siegenthaler article, I had no idea that Wikipedia was not even checked by the makers and that it was possible for this site to affect a person's life. I also think that if college teachers used this as a part of the English curriculum, students would actually be interested because Wikipedia is so commonly known. Teachers using academic writings to teach is not the best way to get a student's attention; it may be proof but it’s hard to understand academic writings of the bet and teachers fail to get the message across.

Researching about Wikipedia, is kind of a way to relate to our generation. We are the internet generation after all. Another reason why colleges shouldn’t cut out Wikipedia is because Wikipedia is widely used. I know that when I type a certain topic into Google for research, Wikipedia is usually the first or second link I get. Colleges should use the approach, “ If you can’t beat them, join them.” It’s like a compromise. Use Wikipedia as an advantage in making college education better. And it might not even just be Wikipedia, colleges could even help students easily recognize sites that they can’t use as sources.

I think in college, it's also really important to refresh students about the basics of writing. We all come from different schools and some schools teach better than others, so it would be nice if we were all on the same page.

1 comment:

  1. It seems like you're off to a good start in terms of developing your stance on the topic. A couple of questions: are you going to focus in your essay primarily on Wikipedia in English classrooms? Because it seems like other classes could (or should) do the same thing -- in any discipline in which research is a priority (and there are a lot of them!)

    Also, I'm not sure how your last paragraph relates to the overall topic. What do you mean when you talk about refreshing students "about the basics of writing"? How does the use (or the banning) of Wikipedia relate to this goal? That's something you would want to be sure to make clear if you plan to develop this idea further in your essay.