In the past, Open and Distance Learning (ODL) was primarily conducted through snail mail where institutions sent reading and other materials to learners. With the advent of Internet and related digital technologies, this has gradually changed. This paper explores how a free and open digital technology like MediaWiki, and Wikimedia open knowledge projects can be used as pedagogical tools to access content online, collaboratively create and share learning resources with participants, thereby facilitating and integrating wikis into ODL.
The paper also discusses how MediaWiki and Wikimedia projects are currently being used by IT for Change (ITfC) to promote open, collaborative and distance learning, to illustrate how these technologies can support and promote ODL at individual, institutional and systemic levels. Not only does the use of MediaWiki enhances the availability of learning resources for ODL programs, it also enables the participation of teachers and learners as co-constructors of knowledge, in line with constructivist approaches to learning.