Members of the academic community have rightly raised a number of issues around the academic credibility of the Psychology Wiki .
They rightly praise articles for their high academic standards but want to know how they can be sure about the quality of any particular reference that, for example, a student might quote in an exam paper.. They cant keep checking the latest version of a page because they fear it may have been degraded since they last looked at it.
Part of the value of the Psychology Wiki is that material can be continually updated and added to, but this dynamic benefit prejudices its academic authority on an ongoing basis.
It has been said that the Wiki is continually under 'peer review' and clear cases of quality degrading vandalism can be tracked and eradicated quickly. While this is true there is a conterargument saying that the Wiki is not so much 'peer reviewed' as 'publicly reviewed' and this is a different matter and does not alway ensure top quality academic standards. While for most practical purposes most of the time the quality of articles will eventually be authorative enough, we need some system of authoratative institutional approval, akin to the stamp that publication in a journal affords.
So how can we maintain the benefits of flexibility and updating with the certain stamp of academic authority suitable for academic referencing. The answer seems to be to 'lock' a version of a page once it has been approved as authoritative by an appropriate academic panel, but allow another version to continue to be worked on. This might then be reviewed at a later date and subsequently saved as the new authoritative version.
Some thought needs to be given to the practicalities of these arrangements. There seems a clear role here for the academic societies but they would probably need to be coordinated on an international basis.
Please us the discussion page to raise further issues or edit this page accordingly.
I would add: Never reference the Psychology Wiki directly, or never reference wikipedia directly. Instead, use it as you would use Google, to find out information on a subject, and then use the references which the article has to read further. Once the Psychology Wiki links to full text references this will be very useful. If the article lacks references then it is a clear indication that that article is not up to a sound academic standard. If this is the case, either don't reference that article, or else improve the article, and add a reference. This is the point of the project. Mostly Zen 20:32, 14 June 2006 (UTC)