ELI 2011 Annual Meeting "Educating in the Open: Philosophies, Innovations, and Stories" / February 14–16 2011 / Washington, D.C. or Online
'Crowdsourcing' a Textbook: 120 Student Authors Writing on a Wiki / Tuesday / February 15 2011 / 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. / Georgetown
Edward F. Gehringer, Associate Professor, Computer Science, North Carolina State University
Many instructors have experimented with student-authored wiki textbooks. Advantages include reading and evaluating primary literature and facilitating constructivist learning. We manage the peer-review process using the Expertiza system, which allows reviewers and authors to communicate in double-blind fashion and sets deadlines for each step so that prerequisite chapters are written before chapters that depend on them. Students have given positive feedback on nearly every aspect of the process, especially on the care they put into their work and the insight they gained. Our efforts have scaled to a textbook with 40-plus sections written by a class of 120.
* Understand the benefits of student-written textbooks.
* Explore the reactions of students to writing textbook sections.
* Learn the importance of software support for the process of writing a textbook.
* Consider how various forms of peer review can provide formative feedback to authors.