Why Do Teachers Hate Wikipedia? (11 Reasons Why)

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Jean Richardson

Jean Richardson is a lover of knowledge, in all forms. He has spent over 15 years as a high school teacher, instructing students in history, geography, mathematics, and more.

When most people think of Wikipedia, they likely think of it as a reliable source of information. But for teachers, the online encyclopedia is anything but helpful.

Many teachers have strongly negative opinions of Wikipedia and its reliability. In this article, we’ll explore 11 reasons why teachers hate Wikipedia.

Why Do Teachers Hate Wikipedia?


1. Not A Reliable Source

One of the biggest problems with Wikipedia is that it is not a reliable source of information. This is especially true when it comes to matters of education.

For example, consider the article on the Columbine High School massacre. Wikipedia claims that the shooters were “jealous lovers” who were “out of control.”

However, other sources say that the shooters were obsessed with violent video games and had planned the attack for months. This is just one example.

Many teachers have negative opinions of Wikipedia because it is not a reliable source. However, when conducting research, it’s important to have reliable sources.

2. Not Scholarly

Teachers have long been vocal about their disdain for Wikipedia. They argue that its accuracy is often questionable and is not a scholarly source.

One of the main reasons why teachers resist using Wikipedia in class is its lack of accuracy. Wikipedia does not always accurately reflect the academic consensus on specific topics.

Information on Wikipedia has not been peer-reviewed and checked by scholars. Therefore, it’s not considered to be a scholarly source.

Wikipedia also has a history of editing incidents. For example, in 2010, an editor named Jimmy Wales changed an article about Egypt, causing widespread confusion.

It has been known to contain errors even in highly reputable sources. Simply put, Wikipedia is not a scholarly source to use for research, which is why teachers hate it.

3. Easy To Plagiarize

One of the main reasons why teachers hate Wikipedia is because it is easy to plagiarize. Students can easily copy and paste information from Wikipedia into their work.

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One way to combat the problem of plagiarism is to require students to cite their sources when they use information from the internet.

This will help teachers verify the accuracy of the information and help students be more responsible for the information they are using.

Wikipedia is often written poorly enough to pass as student writing, which is why it’s so easy to plagiarize. This is why teachers hate it.

4. Not Always Accurate

There are several reasons why teachers hate Wikipedia. One reason is it may not always be accurate. In addition, Wikipedia is not a verified source.

This means it is not independently verified by third parties to ensure accuracy. However, Wikipedia can be updated rapidly.

Teachers complain about Wikipedia’s lack of accuracy. For example, in 2006, a Texas English teacher was fired for editing an article about Abraham Lincoln to say he was a racist.

The teacher edited the article to say Lincoln was anti-black and wanted to keep slaves. This is one of many examples of inaccuracies.

Information on the website may change over time, which could impact the accuracy of the information.

5. User-Generated Content

Teachers hate Wikipedia because it’s full of user-generated content. Anyone can go only and generate content for Wikipedia.

There is no one to fact-check or proofread, making the content unreliable. As a result, some teachers believe that Wikipedia is biased.

They say that it is often used to support views not supported by the evidence. For example, some teachers believe that the controversial article about Hillary Clinton is biased.

6. Does Not Teach Research

Does Not Teach Research 

Wikipedia does not teach students how to do proper research. Instead, it makes it easy for them to look up a Wikipedia article for all the answers.

Students aren’t looking for other sources, and they’re not learning how to conduct proper scholarly research.

One study found that when teachers used Wikipedia as a resource, students performed worse on tests that were based on the material they had learned from the class.

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The study found that students who used Wikipedia were likelier to make mistakes in their answers.

Many teachers believe that Wikipedia is a poorly researched source of information. One reason for this is the fact that anyone can edit it without consequence.

Many teachers dislike Wikipedia because students rely on it for their research, and they’re not learning proper research techniques.

7. Anti-Technology Teachers

Some teachers hate Wikipedia because they are against technology. They want their students to do research in a physical location.

Many teachers want to teach students how to research through a library and use actual books in their research.

Anti-technology teachers hate Wikipedia. They hate it because it’s a new technology, and the outdated teachers are not keeping up with it.

8. Wikipedia Is Biased

Another problem with Wikipedia is that it can be biased. For example, if you support climate change denialism, you may find Wikipedia biased against you.

Similarly, if you are a conservative teacher, you may not find many articles that reflect your beliefs on Wikipedia.

Wikipedia is written from the perspective of those contributing to the website. This can lead to bias or inaccuracies in the information.

Wikipedia lacks impartiality. For example, it can be biased towards certain ideologies or viewpoints. This makes it difficult to use as a source of information in class.

Finally, many teachers believe that Wikipedia is biased against certain educational institutions. For example, many articles about colleges and universities are negative.

This makes it difficult for students who are studying at these schools to find accurate information about them on Wikipedia.

9. One Location For Multiple Sources

Wikipedia gives multiple sources on one webpage, which some teachers hate. They hate that their students don’t have to look anywhere else.

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This is also not helpful for students to conduct proper research. Overall, teachers say Wikipedia is unsuitable for teaching traditional school subjects.

Wikipedia offers students all the research and sources, so they don’t have to research other sources. This is why teachers hate Wikipedia.

10. Easy To Access

Wikipedia is easy to access on students’ phones, which is why teachers hate it. Teachers argue that Wikipedia is too easy to access on phones.

Furthermore, teachers believe that Wikipedia hurts student learning because it is distracting and takes away from classroom instruction.

Students are more likely to get lost if they are trying to look up information on their own instead of following along with class instruction.

Despite these concerns, some teachers continue to use Wikipedia in their classrooms because they understand its limitations.

11. Circular Sourcing

Wikipedia often has citations to articles that support each other and no outside sourcing. This is called circular sourcing and why some teachers hate Wikipedia.

This is because Wikipedia is a collaborative encyclopedia, and editors with a bias will often try to promote their point of view by editing other people’s articles.

Different people can contribute to Wikipedia from different perspectives and cite other Wikipedia articles. This can lead to conflict and misinformation.

To learn more, you can also read our posts on why teachers hate gum, why teachers get paid so little, and why teachers are so rude.

Conclusion

These 11 reasons explain why teachers hate Wikipedia. Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit, so it’s not very reliable information.

Anyone can create or edit articles, and anyone can read them. Also, students can easily plagiarize, so it’s no wonder teachers hate Wikipedia.

Author

  • Jean Richardson is a lover of knowledge, in all forms. He has spent over 15 years as a high school teacher, instructing students in history, geography, mathematics, and more.

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