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Wikipedia edit-a-thon: Event set up

This guide provides information on why editing Wikipedia is important, how to learn to edit Wikipedia, and how to host a Wikipedia edit-a-thon from preparation, set up, and the actual event.

Event Set-up

How you set up and organize the physical space of your edit-a-thon will help ensure you have a successful event. Use this page to gain ideas for how to organize your event.

Check-In Station

When attendees come to your edit-a-thon the first thing they should encounter is a Check-In station with staff welcoming them to the event and answering any questions. The staff person should provide attendees with a name tag with their name and their comfort level with editing Wikipedia from beginner, intermediate, and expert. If any professors are offering credit for their students attending the event the Check-In station is a good place to capture that information. After the person has been checked-in, staff should then direct them to the next appropriate station.

As people are leaving the event the Check-In station is a good place to set up a digital or physical survey where you can record peoples feelings about the event.


Information Station

At the Information Station attendees will do more intensive editing such as adding information beyond citations to pages and creating new pages. At this station attendees will be asked to choose a person to edit from a pre-prepared list and will be given resources to help them edit. This station is for people who feel more comfortable with editing.

At the Information Stations we also provide a space for people to translate pages if they want to. For example, Spanish Wikipedia might have a robust page for a Mexican artist but English Wikipedia does not have a page at all. In the planning process we identify some of those pages and invite those who want to translate to pick a name off of our lists.

Orientation Station


After Check-In, the next station attendees should be directed to is the Orientation station. At the Orientation Station staff will help the attendee sign-up for a Wikipedia account and learn the basics of editing. During Orientation staff walk attendees through the basics of editing Wikipedia by showing the attendee how to use their sandbox to create the shell of a Wikipedia page while explaining the different features of editing and the importance of correctly citing information. After attendees complete orientation they should be directed to the Citation Station.


Although this is not a specific station, it is good to have a designated place to hold all of your physical resources so that staff know where to access them and editors can easily find the reosurce they need.

Citation Station

At the Citation Station, attendees are given a choice of people to add citations for pulled from the lists you compiled during planning. Attendees are also given the corresponding resources to help them add citations. This station is designed as an easy way to introduce people to editing and build their confidence.

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