Evaluating and Grading Students' Wiki Participation

This guide will demonstrate how to evaluate students' participation levels in wikis, as well as how to grade students work in wikis.

Accessing Course Wikis, Part 1

Image of the Blackboard course menu with the Wikis link outlined by a red circle.

To access a course wiki, log into your Blackboard course and click on the Wikis link in the course menu.

Accessing Course Wikis, Part 2

You will now be taken to a screen labeled Wikis that lists all the course wikis.  To access a wiki, click on the name of the wiki you wish to access.

Evaluating Student Participation

You will then be taken to the wiki home page.  To evaluate and grade students' participation, click on the Participation and Grading button in the upper right hand corner of the screen.

Viewing the Wiki Participation Summary

You will now see a screen labeled Participation Summary that lists all users who have participated in the wiki:

  1. Name: The name of the user will appear here. To grade a user, click on their name.
  2. Words Modified (number count): This column shows the total number of words the user has modified within the wiki.
  3. Words Modified (Percentage): This column shows the total number of words modified within the wiki as a percentage of total words modified.
  4. Page Saves (Number Count): This column shows the total number of times the user has saved wiki pages.
  5. Page Saves (Percentage): This column shows the percentage of total page saves made by the user.

Grading a Student's Wiki Participation

Image of the Participant's Contribution with the following annotations: 1.Page Version: This column provides a link to each page the student has edited. Click on the name of the page to view the page on screen.2.User's Modification: This column provides a link to the changes the user has made to each page.  Click on the links in this column to view annotations of changes made by the student.3.Participation Summary: The bottom section of the right column lists a summary of the total words modified and page saves made by the student.4.Grade: Enter a point value for the student's participation here5.Feedback: Shown to User: Enter feedback for the user in the space provided.6.Add Notes: Click on the Add Notes link to add grading notes that are only visible to instructors.7.Click the Submit button to save the student's grade.8.Use the dropdown menu at the top of the grading panel to select additional students to grade.

After selecting a student to grade, you will see a screen labeled Participant's Contribution: (Student Name):

  1. Page Version: This column provides a link to each page the student has edited. Click on the name of the page to view the page on screen.
  2. User's Modification: This column provides a link to the changes the user has made to each page.  Click on the links in this column to view annotations of changes made by the student.
  3. Participation Summary: The bottom section of the right column lists a summary of the total words modified and page saves made by the student.
  4. Grade: Enter a point value for the student's participation here
  5. Feedback: Shown to User: Enter feedback for the user in the space provided.
  6. Add Notes: Click on the Add Notes link to add grading notes that are only visible to instructors.
  7. Click the Submit button to save the student's grade.
  8. Use the dropdown menu at the top of the grading panel to select additional students to grade.

Best Practices

Benefits for Faculty

With graded wikis, instructors can assess students’ ability to work collaboratively and cooperatively with others students. Instructors can show a student where their contributions excel and where they can improve by assigning them a grade. A graded wiki can also create a permanent record of communication.

Grading a wiki is much like grading in other collaborative tools in Blackboard. When you enable grading for a wiki, a column is created automatically in the Grade Center. An instructor must create or have access to a wiki before they can assign grades.

The instructor will find it helpful to consider the following best practices when grading discussion board activities:

  • Grading must be matched to learning outcomes (Quality Matters standards 3.1 and 5.1).
  • Grading must be aligned with instruction (QM 4.1).
  • Students must be given clear guidelines regarding how their work will be graded (i.e., grading rubrics - QM 3.3).
Benefits for Students

Student participation and contributions increase significantly when posting counts toward their grade even in a small way. By requiring regular participation and occasionally quoting and/or sharing student work from the wiki in the classroom, the instructor can reiterate the importance of the work happening in that space, and tap into a good source of classroom discussion topics.

When and How

Instructors need to create meaningful learning activities that emphasize active learning and learner-learner interaction (QM 5.2 and 6.2), as well as timely and constructive feedback regarding the quality of their contributions.