Submissions:2016/An Argument for Allowing Wiki References in College Essays

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An Argument for Allowing Wiki References in College Essays

Education and Academic Engagement

Academic Peer Review option
Type of submission
Erik Bean, Ed.D.
E-mail address

For years higher education writing standards have struggled to allow the use of Wikipedia for college essay citations and references. The academicians say that information should be peer reviewed and that those with "legitimate" authorship are commonly accepted. However, not all sources in databases, on Websites, in published journals, magazines, and newspapers, for example, that are used in college essays are as rigorous. Therefore, while not all Wikipedia material is as rigorous as peer reviewed, most of the material falls under the same attribution standards common to those essays that include non peer reviewed materials. Thus, allowing Wikipedia as an option for a quality source should be based on the merit of the information posted in Wikipedia and the trail of those who contribute, particularly in cases where anonymity is less problematic. As is the case with any college essay, all sources are judged based on the quality of their merit and using Wikipedia should represent some of the sources, and not all. Wikipedia has grown in its structure and prominence and is at a tipping point where it can and should be legitimized. It can be argued that Wikipedia is a minority since it is often misunderstood by the academic community and challenges it with new thought processes that can make the old academia guard left to share the ability to get published with virtually everyone.

Length of presentation
30-75 min.
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