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How to use Wikipedia in your research as well as how to contribute to it.

Who Can Contribute?

Anyone can edit Wikipedia! Those who take the time to do so are generally smart, curious people who care about a subject and about the encyclopedia project. Wikipedia welcomes new editors: if you are willing to learn a little bit about how the site works, and can improve an article to help make it better, you can help Wikipedia.

There are thousands of Wikipedia editors, and they come from all over the world. Young and old, experts and non-experts, they have different interests but share the same set of goals.

Wikipedia's Principles

All articles need to comply with the following basic principles:

  • Neutrality: all articles need to be neutral -- not taking a position
  • Not original research: Wikipedia is not the place to report original results, or do original synthesis
  • Verifiable: everything should be sourced to a reputable source
  • Notable: the article should be about something or someone that is notable in the world, as determined by other sources
  • Free: don't copy other people's text. Everything you write on Wikipedia is released under a free license: other people can use it.

Training Video: Basic Rules of Wikipedia Editing

Training Video: Creating New Articles

How to Edit

How to Edit Guide

Anyone can edit: you don't even need to create an account. However, it is a good idea to do so: just go to the "log in/create account" link in the upper right-hand corner.

Once you've done so, click the "edit" link at the top of the editing window. You will see a window that contains the wikitext. Make your changes here, and then hit "save". That's it: you just edited Wikipedia!

Wikipedia uses a simple, intuitive layout to keep the focus on the information, not the design.

The page layout has the following tabs at the top of the window:

  • Article: Shows the Wikipedia article.
  • Discussion: Shows user's discussion about the article.
  • Edit: Where the user can actually edit the article.
  • View History: Shows who has changed the article and what changes were made.
  • Star: Causes changes in the article to be added to the watchlist.

Training Video: Adding Images to Articles

Training Video: Adding Citations

Guidelines for Content

Wikipedia Editing Resources

Images and Photos:


wikiD Guides for Wikipedia Editing ( pdf's available below)

  • Guide #1: Getting Started
  • Guide #2: Selecting+Researching a Topic/Subject
  • Guide #3: Writing an Entry
  • Guide #4: Navigating the Wikipedia Interface
  • Guide #5: Troubleshooting

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