Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Blanche W. O'Bannon

Committee Members

Dorothy A. Hendricks, Jennifer A. Morrow, Kevin S. Waters Jr.


This study examines student engagement and short-term and long-term achievement when a wiki was used constructively in place of traditional lecture to learn about the Civil Rights Movement. The study was conducted with students enrolled in two rural high school contemporary issues classes in the southeastern United States. The results indicated that participants in the experimental and control groups were engaged and enjoyed the topic that was studied. The participants in the experimental group showed significant increases in engagement while synthesizing information from numerous resources to develop wiki pages and while working collaboratively with other participants. There was no significant increase in short-term or long-term student achievement. Students in both groups enjoyed learning about the Civil Rights Movement, but several became emotional, voicing concerns. Comments included, “I hate the thought [of] that happening to people, and I couldn’t imagine going through that or watching others go through it. It was cruel and wrong and I don’t understand how people can hate someone on the basis of their skin.” Another added, “it [Civil Rights Movement] is still a touchy subject,” and yet another said, “the Civil Rights Movement was a beautiful display of courage, support, and righteousness.”

Files over 3MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "save as..."