This article examines the effectiveness of using wikis for collaborative projects in college journalism classrooms, with the principles of andragogy as a framework. The use of wikis in two journalism courses at a large university in the American Midwest illustrates how wikis can encourage learners to become more self-directed by engaging in online collaborative writing about how best to produce reports about diverse populations. Two case studies are related to journalistic best practices in the coverage of two sensitive topics: Islam and immigration. The content of these wikis was compiled into best-practices documents that informed the students’ subsequent coursework. The documents were also published online for use in classrooms and newsrooms, offering a “real world” audience for the work. This article provides educators with an outline for engaging students in similar projects to improve their application skills as well as critical thinking.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/brianjbowe/20/