LP4/ Q2 – Discussion

In the leaning portfolio, Wikipedia is not permitted as resource. This is because, Wikipedia is not credible source for academic essays.

Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia which everyone can use or edit. A merit of this system is that users can get information even from minor fields, because as long as there is one person who has knowledge about the field, he can write articles. In other words, Wikipedia is an aggregation of all knowledge. However, the disadvantage of this system is that not all information is accurate, because writers do not have to be in charge of the articles. This leads to a lack of credible sources, experts – all factors needed for trustworthiness and expertise as pointed out by Fogg(2003). This means that not all information on Wikipedia is credible. In fact, Chesney (2006) claims that about ‘13 percent of the articles contain mistakes’.

When it comes to academic writing, students are required to discuss their opinions reference to trustworthy sources. Thus, Wikipedia is not a suitable source for academic writing. Ghajar says that even Jimmy Wales, the Wikipedia founder says ‘I don’t think people should cite it, … People shouldn’t be citing encyclopedias in the first place. Wikipedia and other encyclopedias should…give good, solid background information to inform your studies for a deeper level”. Therefore, Wikipedia is not accepted as a credible resource for academic assignments.

References
Chesney, T. (2006, November 6). An empirical examination of Wikipedia’s credibility [Blog Post]. Retrieved from http://firstmonday.org/article/view/1413/1331

Ghajar, L., A. Wikipedia: Credible Research Source or Not? Retrieved from http://teachinghistory.org/digital-classroom/ask-a-digital-historian/23863

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