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Conducting Research In The Ashford Library

A peer reviewed journal or article is an article or journal that has been reviewed by experts in the field and deemed to be worth reading by other professionals. Typically this is an extensive process in which reviewers are carefully vetted for expertise and professional experience. In this assignment, you will have an opportunity to examine a peer reviewed article and apply what you have learned to a professional scenario or activity.

Please refer to the following tutorials for guidance on conducting scholarly research at the Ashford Library:

  • About Scholarly Journals and Online Databases
  • How to Conduct Research Using the Ashford Library

Step 1: New to Wikis?

If you are already familiar with wikis, you can skip to Step 2.
The first wiki was developed in 1995 and creation is most often attributed to Ward Cunningham. The primary uniqueness of wikis is that multiple users can collaborate on content and organizational structures of web-based content. A very famous Wiki is the massive online encyclopedia, Wikipedia, which is based on the Media Wiki software. If you are entirely new to the concept of a wiki, please review the video below [approximately four minutes long] and visit the site http://wikimatrix.org/ to compare some of the available wiki software (2007). Wikis in plain English. Available from YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dnL00TdmLY
Step 2: Review Literature about Wikis
This step will prepare you for addressing the Dilemma in Step 3 and ensure you can apply research to support learning in a technology-enhanced environment. You very likely have experience as a learner using wiki technology, such as reviewing pages from the aforementioned Wikipedia. However, have you read any research about when and why to use wikis effectively? Consider the following resources freely available through open-access journals online:
Deters, F., Cuthrell, K., Stapleton, J. (2010, March). Why wikis? Student perceptions of using wikis in online coursework. Journal of Online Learning and Teaching 6(1). Retrieved from http://jolt.merlot.org/vol6no1/deters_0310.htm
Johnson, L.M. & Sims, R. (2013, June). A case of wikis and contradictions: Activity systems, classroom community, and instructional design for collaborative online learning. Journal of Applied Instructional Design, 3(1), 19-31. Available from http://www.jaidpub.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Johnson-Sims-MAY2013.pdf
Next, use the Ashford University Library linked in our course to locate at least one more scholarly article about use of wikis in the classroom. The article needs to come from a peer reviewed source (e.g., Journal) and be a full-text article. Use this library tutorial for advanced searches to learn about searching for peer reviewed journals. Suggested search keywords are “wiki” and “instructional design”.
Step 3: Write a Response to the Dilemma

Consider hypothetically that you have a position as an instructional designer for a school, college, university, company, or a military group. In your position, you also manage a group of interns. Your supervisor asks you to develop training modules about best practices at your organization. James, an intern, suggests that you use a wiki to simplify the content maintenance. However, Pat, another intern, suggests that students completing the modules collaborate using a wiki as part of their course activities. Dara, your other intern, suggests that wikis are never a good idea and opposes their use entirely for training.
Construct a response (e.g., Letter, Email, Video) to your interns addressing the suggestions made. The response must explain your thoughts on the use of a wiki as an eLearning tool and discuss specific advantages and disadvantages of using a wiki for the training. Support your assertions in the letter by synthesizing and referring to the Deters, Cuthrell and Stapleton (2010) and the Johnson and Sims (2013) articles as well as the article you located from the Ashford University Library and any personal experience you have with using wikis. For the citation of the article you selected from the Ashford University Library, please be sure to include the database where you retrieved the article. If you select a video option, a transcript or closed captioning is required.

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