SlideWiki: Create, publish, share and reuse presentations online

Interview with Professor Sören Auer about the SlideWiki platform

Presentations have become indispensable in our everyday lives, whether at school, in college or at work. On the SlideWiki platform, presentations, especially open teaching and learning materials, i.e. Open Educational Resources (OER), can be jointly created, edited, updated, changed and accessed. In this interview with Professor Sören Auer, Coordinator of SlideWiki and Director of  the TIB – Leibniz Information Centre for Science and Technology, you will learn more about SlideWiki.

SlideWiki, an EU-funded project, enables the collaborative creation of free teaching and learning materials. These include, for instance, slide sets, lecture notes and course content. What is special about this platform?

The SlideWiki platform, which is the main focus of the SlideWiki project, provides an open-source online platform for collaboratively creating and sharing Open Educational Resources (OER) in the form of presentation slides. Unlike other OER repositories, SlideWiki is designed to ensure the reuse, mixing, and repurpose of OER material and slides, and to help educators gain access to new course materials.

Portrait of Prof. Dr. Sören Auer
Prof. Dr. Sören Auer, Director of the TIB and coordinator of SlideWiki // Photo: TIB/C. Behrens

SlideWiki combines an online slide creation and presentation tool with a number of interactive features such as comments, ratings, and self-test questions. All content published on SlideWiki is made available under the CC-BY-SA 4.0 Open Creative Commons license, which means that the content can be shared, modified, translated and reused enabling thus efficient collaboration.

In addition, the open-source SlideWiki platform minimizes the effort of creating, translating and developing structured teaching and learning material through crowdsourcing. Similar to Wikipedia for encyclopedic content, SlideWiki enables the collaborative creation of comprehensive OpenCourseWare (OCW) with the objective to semiautomatically translate this content into more than 50 different languages, improving the quality of translations, and supporting the engagement and social networking of educators and learners.

Which are the target groups that can best benefit from using the SlideWiki platform?

Education is a central element of social progress. Therefore, the target groups that can best benefit from using the SlideWiki platform are as diverse as our society. The possible user groups include, in particular, students, researchers, stakeholders in education, vocational training and higher education, groups interested in Open Educational Resources (OER), multinational organizations, institutes and organizers of conferences and their participants. In this regard, the SlideWiki platform offers many benefits and added value for each user group. SlideWiki is particularly suitable for the structured representation of content for people with disabilities. In the project InclusiveOCW, for example, SlideWiki is adapted to provide the best educational solutions for blind and visually impaired users.

What are the next steps and challenges for the SlideWiki project?

SlideWiki has now launched a call for tenders to evaluate the SlideWiki platform and increase its use. The call is aimed at organizations and institutions involved in higher education. The call will finance studies, with a budget of between € 25,000 and € 50,000 available for each study. The selected candidates will receive financial support, advice, technical support and mentoring from the members of the SlideWiki consortium to conduct these large-scale trials. The studies will collect feedback as well as educational material and publish on SlideWiki. The topics of the studies cover a broad spectrum, such as search, evaluation, creation of user groups and slides, user profiling and interactive learning analytics. Four partners of the SlideWiki consortium organize the implementation of these large-scale experiments.

Furthermore a contest is currently under way to reward users who publish slides and open teaching and learning materials on SlideWiki. The participating teams can win up to € 1,000. Which are the requirements for this competition?

With the organization of an OpenCourseWare competition, the SlideWiki consortium invites users to create and publish high-quality learning content in the SlideWiki platform. These learning materials are provided in the form of presentation slides and are directly related to education, vocational training, higher education and/or open educational resources with contributions from academics, teachers and learners with disabilities. Participants should create reusable and multilingual material on a crowdsourced basis. Each of the five teams of participants, who will receive the highest rating from the reviewers in the various categories and meet the established standard requirements for the quality of the content and slides, will each receive the prize of € 500. As the focus is on quality and quantity, teams that produce high-quality content and many slides, that is, more than 200 slides, thus impressing the reviewers, will be awarded twice the price, i.e. € 1,000 each.

More about the SlideWiki contest

About SlideWiki

SlideWiki is funded under the Horizon 2020 EU research and innovation funding program for a period of three years, from 1 January 2016 to 31 December 2018 (Horizon 2020, Grant Agreement No 688095). The Leibniz Universität Hannover and 17 national and international partners are developing the platform further in order to optimize it, implementing new functionalities and improving its user-friendliness. SlideWiki is hosted by the TIB – Leibniz Information Center Technology and the L3S Research Center at the Leibniz Universität Hannover.