Wikipedia in teaching: benefits and stumbling blocks

Wikipedia logo

Dulcie Hollyock Room, Ground Floor, Baillieu Library

Wikipedia is the world’s largest and most-used encyclopedia, and often students’ first point of call for research. To increase students’ understanding of how to read and contribute to Wikipedia, editing it is used in the classroom as a learning activity, or even an assessment tool. Join us for a panel discussion on how academics from across Melbourne are using Wikipedia, and the issues they have encountered in embedding it into the curriculum. Prof. Tina Brock will talk about how pharmacy students at Monash’s Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences learn how to edit Wikipedia pages as part of their course. La Trobe University’s Dr Thomas Shafee will share his experience of teaching biochemistry postgraduate students to use Wikipedia, and WikiJournals, for literature reviews. Chairing the panel will be Dr Mary Tomsic, a historian and co-organiser of the Melbourne University’s Wikipedia Community of Practice. If you have considered engaging your students with Wikipedia or information literacy but don’t know how and where to start this is an event not to be missed – no matter what discipline you teach in! Everyone welcome - no booking required.

This event runs as part of Information Awareness Month.


  • Prof. Tina Brock, Monash
  • Dr Thomas Shafee, La Trobe University
  • Dr Mary Tomsic, University of Melbourne


Prof. Tina Brock Tina Brock is Professor of Pharmacy Education and Practice in the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at Monash University where she is part of the leadership team for an innovative integrated masters course in pharmacy.

Dr Thomas Shafee is an evolutionary biochemist at La Trobe University, with a focus on protein engineering. He is also a keen contributor to improving the images and citations on science topics in Wikipedia. He organises Wikipedia-Academia integration as an editor for PLOS Genetics and editor-in-chief of WikiJournal of Science.

Dr Mary Tomsic is an historian working as part of an ARC Laureate Fellowship on the history of child refugees and Australian internationalism at The University of Melbourne. Mary is a member of Melbourne University’s Wikipedia Community of Practice and is particularly interested in representations of women’s and feminist history on Wikipedia.

More information

View our Resources page to see how others have used Wikipedia in teaching.