Improving Student Learning By Encouraging Reflection Through Class Wikis
2009 Annual Conference & Exposition Proceedings
A cohort of students enrolled in a chemical engineering was required to contribute to a collaborative reflective document with the objective of more rapidly assimilating new knowledge into the problem solving process. Motivated by prior work in the literature describing the use of portfolios and by the successes of collaborative learning, selected elements of each were tied into a simple project requiring minimal student time to collaboratively develop a reflective learning document using a
... ocument using a wiki. A wiki is a web-accessible document that can be edited by multiple users. For this project, students in a material and energy balance course were assigned the weekly task of maintaining a wiki page on the current textbook chapter by entering what they perceived as the most important items learned during class. This was similar to other active learning activities suggested in the literature, but in this case the student contributions were collaborative and archival. Students were encouraged to be complete and accurate with the promise that their entries would be available during an exam. Other wiki pages the students developed included a set of suggestions in preparing for the first exam for future students enrolled in the course. Student assessment suggested that the project was accepted as a valuable part of the course, and instructor assessment indicated that students more rapidly assimilated core concepts into their problem solving repertoire as a result of this activity.