Ask the Experts: Comparison of Wiki tools

Ask the Experts: Comparison of Wiki Tools


During the session,  Helen, Dave and Steve will update this wiki with ideas about the pros and cons of different wiki tools. If you have used any wiki tools, please add your ideas too!



  Advantages Disadvantages Comments

 simple and easy to use

readily accessible and available

 external to institution - NOT under the institution's control

Student's and student groups can set up their own wikis without staff intervention - staff can be invited in to the end product (others may also do this, but I've found this working really well in PBwiki)

External to institution - NOT under the institution's control.



Easier to use than pbwiki, some say.


Nicer interface than PBwiki

Also external to the institution.

Some questionable adverts! However, for a small fee these can be removed - so cost can be a constraint.

Generally this format is easy to navigate, so of particular use for students who may be intimidated by online learning. 


If you're a  K-12 institution Wikispaces are giving away ad-free spaces

Moodle wiki

Internal to VLE which means you don't have to worry about inviting people, or passwords.

 internal to VLE!

is not as powerful, as the external equivalents (e.g. students cannot create their own pages within the wiki - tutor has to create all the pages they think the students will need)

too institutionalised

 I believe that there is development in this area, so hopefully something better will come along


(Helen Whitehead - my experience is that students CAN create pages...maybe it depends on your version)

Blackboard wiki


Very simple.

Not really a wiki.

Does not have most of the value added functions a wiki is designed to have

Gives wikis a bad name - if students think this is all a wiki is they will not go see how useful they might be in the future/current working lives

Is under institutional control, and may not be that attractive for some students.

 MMUBS use WebCT (owned by Blackboard), but the students prefer Facebook as an informal Wiki site for discussions.
Plone wiki

Internal to the institution - under the institution's control

Easy to use and well integrated with other Plone features such as basic web pages, navigation, blogs and discussion threads.

Internal to the institution -

If hosted by an institution cannot be edited by anyone outside the institution

Plone requires a good deal of technical support

Mediawiki Possibly the most developed of all the wiki formats - and is the one powering Wikipedia.  Does not have a full WYSIWYG editor - so have to learn some wiki language or html code to be able to use fully  
 WetPaint Very good for using with images  Has a 'search all wikis' facility - which may deter some people from contributing, knowing that their work can be searched  




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