Wikipedia

This is a guide that helps you use and edit Wikipedia responsibly.

What is Wikipedia?

By Wikimedia Foundation - Wikimedia Foundation, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10310401

If you use the internet, you have probably used Wikipedia. Wikipedia is an online free encyclopedia whose content is contributed by users. Because it is an encyclopedia, it is a tertiary resource, which gives factual information about something. This also means Wikipedia does not contain original research, biases, or opinions.

Why Use Wikipedia?

You have probably heard from your teachers or professors not to use Wikipedia. Because the content is contributed by the public, anybody can add anything they want. That means the information is not trustworthy, right?

Actually, Wikipedia has rigorous standards for what content stays and which gets edited or removed. These standards are enforced by the public as well as bots.

Wikipedia is also a great way to get a summary of a topic. Don't know much about a complicated topic you just learned? Wikipedia is the first place to start. In fact, everything on Wikipedia must have a reliable source, just like your own papers. You can follow these sources to go deeper into a topic.

You can also edit Wikipedia to make the content better, which allows you to participate in the creation and upkeep of the resource.

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