Generate a Knowledge Base

When you want students to have an academic debate or share findings, you can use a shared knowledge base. This means that a group of people is responsible for the creation and/or collection of content, which will be around after the course finishes. It can then be used as a starting point for the next group of students. Think of an encyclopedia like wikipedia. This format teaches students how to organize information, how to write academically, how to link to and cite sources, how to critique and interpret sources as well as learning communication and collaboration skills.

First considerations

  • Works for all group sizes

  • Limited preparation needed

  • Structure and navigation, including tagging/indexing, should be decided before you start.


Creating a knowledge base is more a question of organisation than technology. Many technologies can be used.

  • Co-creation and writing articles – (a)synchronous
    Tools such as a wiki or platforms such as OneDrive will allow people to work together on the same content, such as a blog or an article. You could also decide to adopt a page in Wikipedia to improve (discuss with the editors of the page).

  • Concluding and reporting – synchronous
    When a group wants to report on their findings and conclusions from a live session in Kaltura Live Rooms they can use the notes section and whiteboard options.

  • Creating a repository – (a)synchronous
    By letting students upload their content in a shared folder on the LMS (Brightspace or Blackboard), a shared repository is created. You can make students responsible for summarising or tagging the shared article. You can use annotation tools for commenting on shared material.

Relevant links and additional information

Related tools

Tools supported by Leiden University


Kaltura Live Room

Group folders on Blackboard


Other tools

Wiki systems: various variants of open source software available.