Chapter 4b. Case Study: A Conversation with a WikiChampion: Jude Higdon


A Conversation with a WikiChampion: Jude Higdon

1. Why did you choose a wiki?

Grossly speaking, colleges and universities generally see themselves as having two primary missions: teaching and research. The majority of university resources, including technical resources, are dedicated in some form or other to the service of one of these two areas. The Center for Scholarly Technology (CST), my team at the major Southern California research institution where I worked from 2004–2007, was responsible for aiding faculty in the application of technology in support and enhancement of teaching and learning (although these lines were not always very well defined, as instructors are increasingly involving even their undergraduate students in their research). This case study will focus on wiki adoption in this context.

In early 2004 and into 2005 the faculty that we supported was hitting a wall in finding a viable technical solution to meet their needs for intra-and inter-class collaborations. While the University as a whole had invested in a suite of enterprise-level applications for course management (CMS), face-to-face collaborations, and other tools, these often fell short of enabling the kind of meaningful collaborative knowledge-making between and among learners that many of our instructors wanted.

We experimented with many different types of tools, including our enterprise course management system ...

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