One of the biggest obstacles we encounter here at Saylor is link rot. Although we work to host as many resources as we can, we sometimes link to freely available copyrighted material until we can locate resources that we can host on Saylor.org Every day we find new links in our courses that have gone dead, and we must slowly fill the holes that form with each dead link. This is admittedly an unsustainable system, which is why we are continuously looking for new ways to develop sustainable and openly licensed content. With this in mind, today we are excited to announce our newest plan to help fight reliance on third party links and create original educational material available to everyone, by harnessing the large Wikipedia community through Wikimedia’s Wikibooks project.
To begin, we have uploaded onto the Wikibooks server the course outlines for five of our courses which have the least amount of hosted material:
CS107, HIST101, ENGL001, POLSC221, and BIO301. Our hope is that our fellow Wikipedia editors and Wikibookians will fill in information where they can and, together, we can create quality educational materials that also fit with our courses. In addition to text-based information, we are in need of openly licensed images that are relevant to specific entries. These will help to facilitate the learning process for anyone going through our courses. Here is an example of new original content and a potential entry for our HIST101 course.
Because our course outlines can double as textbook outlines, our Saylor Wikibooks Project is an opportunity to create open textbooks that are openly available to the public online and through our courses, and developed with the expertise of the larger academic community.
Are you an expert in cell biology, C++, ancient civilizations, comparative politics, or English composition – or do you know someone that is? Want to help us make more materials hostable on Saylor.org? Then head over to our Wikibooks – and help us get the ball rolling!